Blockchain: business’ next new “It” technology—a comparison of blockchain, relational databases, and Google Sheets
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This paper will revisit two existing technologies—the more traditional relational database and a newer solution, Google Sheets—for storing and sharing data over the network, and their applicability to meeting an accounting organization’s business needs. These two technologies, along with blockchain, will be evaluated against a set of criteria that are essential to most business operations. Decision makers can use this framework that identifies the capabilities and shortfalls of each of these technologies to inform the most effective and appropriate technological solution for individual business opportunities. Further, the paper will address the implications on how an accounting organization addresses data governance. Lastly, a decision paradigm, based on an established set of criteria, is presented to guide an organization in choosing the most appropriate technology. In other words, no single one technology will provide the solution for all business problems.
KeywordsBlockchain Relational databases Google Sheets Data governance
This article is a collaborative effort of Peter J. McAliney and Ban Ang. The authors have each worked with information technology for over 35 years and bring a historical perspective to the emergence of blockchain technology. Both started their professional careers as APL programmers, back when APL was the “It” programming language in that sector of Financial Services that would later become known as FinTech. Ang is currently looking at the technical implications of blockchain, while McAliney is designing educational programs to meet the potential human capital shortage associated with the emergence of blockchain as part of the global economic ecosystem.
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