July 9, 2016

The Next Generation Content Delivery Network: The Content Blockchain

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Linius can be at the heart of transforming rendered content into data driven programmatic content production and blockchain-aware scalability and security.

Previously we have discussed Bitcoin and the Blockchain, and the fact that any type of transaction can be placed in a bitcoin.

We have also outlined how the ledger of these transactions is called a blockchain.

Because Linius virtualises content, the content index is a block in its own right, and that block can form part of a content blockchain.

Part of the video format spec allows for a UDTA atom. This atom can be created and updated by Linius because of our architecture and process.

Not only can we manipulate this atom, but it can be done at the point of transaction. The UDTA atom could include a bitcoin hash reference or a link to another block in the blockchain.

As a refresher, Blockchain is a peer-to-peer ledger where records are stored across the network.

CDNs are Content Delivery Networks using a globally distributed network of proxy servers deployed in multiple data centres.

The goal of a CDN is to serve content to end-users with high availability and high performance.

Content providers such as media companies pay CDN operators to deliver their content to their audience of end-users.

In turn, a CDN can pay ISPs, carriers and network operators for hosting its servers in their data centres. Besides better performance and availability, CDNs also offload the traffic served directly from the content provider's origin infrastructure, resulting in possible cost savings for the content provider.

The CDN network, or in fact any network, has the ability to be upgraded to support a special type of blockchain - a content blockchain.

The content blockchain can support the entire file index as a block or a ledger, and tie that ledger (block) to a group of other blocks including transaction and delivery format.

1. The content blockchain broadcasts a new content block or file index when a file is introduced to the CDN
2. The second block is created with business rules around the content
3. The third block contains user details, user agent and permissions
4. The fourth block contains delivery format

Once the delivery format is created, a virtual file is delivered to the client which has the correct frame mapping to the CDN proxy server which on its backend connects to content frames in files located around the network.

This block is broadcast and updated to all nodes or proxy edge servers. This block continually gets superseded by a new block at point of transaction and delivery.

The hash created for security can be a signature created by a combination of a private key and a virtual file index stored in a block, therefore the key changes every time a delivery is made.

This provides blockchain-type security and can be incorporated directly into a bitcoin payment methodology.

As the world adopts Blockchain, in many fields the area of content is yet to be enabled, but primed for an innovation of this type.

Blockchain on content:

• Helps stabilise rights management issues and royalty issues for artists and studios;
• Provides a better method of content control via virtual content;
• Provides a more agile method of delivering content; and
• Provides a more intelligent network from which to integrate content delivery and fintech products

A CDN with a content blockchain methodology allows content sitting on different parts of the network to be assembled into a single piece of new content “on the fly”.

This new content can be assembled out of the frames of existing content on different nodes of the network without creating a new file, only creating a new block.

Linius can be at the heart of transforming rendered content into data driven programmatic content production and blockchain aware scalability and security.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]

Jodi Cutler
Head of Media Marketing Linius
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