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Sony Details Blockchain Use for Education Data

Sony goes through how it would develop nodes for a blockchain in a recently-released patent application first filed in January.

Dec 4, 2017 at 7:30 a.m. UTC
Updated Sep 13, 2021 at 7:13 a.m. UTC

A new patent filing from Sony highlights how the Japanese tech conglomerate may be using blockchain as part of an education platform.

In August, Sony announced that it was working with IBM to build a suite of educational services, which would use the tech in part to secure student records and form part of a system for sharing that data between agreed-upon parties.

from Sony, published last week by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), points to how that might work in practice.

For example, "nodes" on the education network could be run by teachers, students or other parties that might need access to those records. It refers to how "educational experiences" would be cemented on the chain after being signed by the relevant users.

As the application explains:

"In this example, the [blockchain], which is a trust chain, may be used to store information such as education experiences, certificates and so on of a user. The information contains, for example, studying which courses and possessing which certificates. In addition, based on concepts of a smart contract and a smart property, knowledge may also be exchanged, transacted and transferred via the block chain as a property."

The filing, entitled "Electronic Apparatus, Method for Electronic Apparatus and Information Processing System," hints at other possible uses for the tech as well, including for connecting vehicles across a common network.

That "Internet of Vehicle" network would, as envisioned, enable cars to report road conditions to one another, according to the application's authors.

"By applying the electronic apparatus of the present disclosure to a vehicle (i.e., a node), trust can be transferred between uncorrelated entities using the [blockchain] technology, and real and valid real-time road conditions information is obtained in real-time according to the consensus," they wrote. "In this way, decentralized real-time road conditions observation and further a navigation system may be realized."

Sony image via Vytautas Kielaitis / Shutterstock

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