a new, next-generation blockchain-enabled database service, today
announced the availability of its early access program. ProvenDB
makes it easy for developers to build cutting-edge apps which leverage
the immutable public blockchain. The MongoDB-compatible database service
adds the ability to maintain multiple versions of data and anchor these
to the blockchain. The resulting database versions are tamper-proof,
immutable and cryptographically provable. The company also announced the
availability of an open-source application – ProvenDocs – which
allows end users to upload documents and get blockchain-certified proofs.
ProvenDB is built by a team of database experts, led by Guy
Harrison, an industry leader and author of several books on databases
including “Next Generation Databases.” The company is funded by Toba
Capital, whose founder, Vinny Smith, was the CEO and Chairman of the
database management company Quest Software.
Blockchain has emerged as a powerful, disruptive technology with the
potential to revolutionize banking and other industries. Public
blockchains incorporate a built-in database (or ledger) which records
cryptocurrency transactions or other data elements. Elements on this
ledger are cryptographically protected from modification: it’s possible
to state with cryptographic certainty when a data record was written and
be certain it has not been altered.
However, due to its low throughput, high latency, limited storage
capabilities, simple data structures and poor economics, the ability of
the blockchain to replace traditional database systems is limited. ProvenDB
bridges the gap between databases and the public blockchain by layering
on top of a standard database engine, adding core blockchain
characteristics to the database. The resulting database respects all
usual database “CRUD” operations (Create-Read-Update-Delete) – but also
leverages the blockchain to provide an immutable, tamper-proof history
of the data stored within the database.
“Blockchain has sometimes been described as the world’s worst database,”
explained Guy Harrison, Founder and CTO of ProvenDB. “It offers poor
transactional throughput, and high storage costs. However, its killer
feature is the ability to anchor items to a provable timestamp, allowing
us for the first time to prove the creation time of a data item and
confirm its integrity. This is revolutionary for applications requiring
legal or cryptographic proofs.”
ProvenDB provides a database service that combines the features
of a familiar document database with the blockchain characteristics of
immutability and tamper-proof storage. Using ProvenDB,
applications can easily provide incontestable proofs of data integrity
and provenance and allow users to view previous versions of the database
and provide a complete and provable audit trail of data changes.
“Blockchain technology represents the largest paradigm shift for data
management since the advent of the relational database more than 30
years ago,” said Vinny Smith, Founder, Toba Capital. “For blockchain to
go mainstream, application developers need the performance and ease of
use of a centralized database with the immutability and time stamps of
the public blockchain. ProvenDB will usher in a new era of
applications that have high transactional throughput, low latency, and
legal proofs stored on the public blockchain for transparency and
The company also announced the availability of an end-user application, ProvenDocs,
built on ProvenDB, which allows users to upload any document
through an easy-to-use user interface. The integrity, ownership and
creation date of the documents are reliably stored on the blockchain and
the content of the documents can be private or shared.
About Toba Capital
Toba Capital is an early-stage investment firm committed to helping
create incredible technology companies. Toba looks for businesses
capable of long-term growth and teams with the potential to
fundamentally shift markets for the common good.
Toba Capital takes a high-conviction, hands-on, dollar-concentrated
approach to venture investing. The firm has a single LP evergreen fund
structure, which means its process and investment horizons are highly
aligned with the teams it backs. Toba Capital was founded in 2012 by
Vinny Smith and has offices in Newport Beach and San Francisco.