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The blockchain developer : a practical guide for designing, implementing, publishing, testing, and securing distributed blockchain-based projects
Elrom E., Apress, New York, NY, 2019. 532 pp.  Type: Book (978-1-484248-46-1)
Date Reviewed: Sep 4 2020

“Blockchain” and “cryptocurrency” are now common terms in news headlines. They promise a huge revolution--not only in the finance sector, but also in other activities--by removing intermediaries. This book gives an introduction to blockchain technology by examining the most popular technologies and libraries used to developed solutions for cryptocurrency projects.

The book is focused on readers who are proficient in JavaScript development and want to take their first steps in designing and developing blockchain-based projects. The first chapters introduce the basic concepts of blockchain and cryptocurrencies such as blocks, nodes, coins, peer-to-peer (P2P) networks, miners, and so on. The book proposes a hands-on approach in which a specific technology is used as an example for the different concepts presented.

Most of the source code presented in the book is JavaScript (a few examples are in C++). The installation and examples created using the terminal are based on Mac OS X. The second part of the book presents five blockchain platforms: Bitcoin, Ethereum, EOS.IO, NEO, and Hyperledger. For each one, the author explains its installation and includes basic examples of how to create a wallet and write smart contracts.

Finally, the last chapters present an introduction to the development of decentralized applications that interact with smart contracts (known as DApps), some basic guidelines to avoid the most common security vulnerabilities, and an analysis of the applicability of blockchain to different fields such as gaming, healthcare, real estate, and so on.

The author does a good job of presenting the main technologies used in the blockchain community. However, after reading the book, I feel that I did not learn enough from it. This is mainly because the book tries to present several technologies but explains only some basic cases for each one. For example, in the case of smart contracts, they are mainly explained with “Hello World” examples. Thus, other books could be used to complement this one [1,2,3].

In summary, this book could be quite interesting to learn the big picture of the main technologies used in blockchain. Maybe it could also be useful for a hands-on workshop. However, I would not recommend it to be used as a textbook nor as a reference to structure a course.

More reviews about this item: Amazon

Reviewer:  Santiago Vidal Review #: CR147053 (2102-0033)
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