Are Blockchain and Bitcoin the same thing?
A decentralized network relies on a host of computers. It physically cannot work with a single computer or point-of-connection. Instead, it requires a slew of other computers to join in, in order to complete a specific task on the network. A decentralized database doesn’t have a single location; pieces of information are stored in different locations which are all connected to each other.
The blockchain is far more than its digital currency ecosystem; currently, big companies are concentrating on how the technology, as a whole, can add value to their businesses. Information held on a blockchain exists as a shared — and continually reconciled — database. The blockchain database isn’t stored in any single location, meaning the records it keeps are truly public and easily verifiable. No centralized version of this information exists for a hacker(s) to corrupt. Hosted by millions of computers simultaneously, its data is accessible to anyone on the internet. Each file is composed of blocks, where each block includes a cryptographic signature of the previous block, creating an immutable record.
A distributed ledger is a database held and updated independently by each participant (or node) in a large network. The distribution is unique: records are not communicated to various nodes by a central authority, but are independently constructed and held by every node. That is, every single node on the network processes every transaction, coming to its own conclusions and then voting on those conclusions to make certain the majority agree with the conclusions. Once there is this consensus, the distributed ledger has been updated, and all nodes maintain their own identical copy of the ledger. This architecture allows for a new dexterity as a system of record that goes beyond being a simple database.
Public blockchains allow anyone to see or send transactions as long as they are part of the consensus process.
Private blockchains (Hyperledger platform) restrict the ability to write to a distributed ledger to an organization, or between a set number of organizations.