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What Is A Smart Contract?

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A smart contract is a computer protocol intended to digitally facilitate, verify, or enforce the negotiation or performance of a contract. Smart contracts allow the performance of credible transactions without third parties. These transactions are trackable and irreversible. Smart contracts were first proposed by Nick Szobo in 1994.

Smart contract address

A smart contract address is a unique identifier for a specific smart contract on the blockchain. It’s a long string of alphanumeric characters that is used to identify and interact with a smart contract on the blockchain. Example of smart contract address: 0x95aD61b0a150d79219dCF64E1E6Cc01f0B64C4cE.

Smart Contract & Blockchain explorer

A blockchain Explorer is a web application that allows users to view all transactions that have taken place on a blockchain. It is a search engine that allows users to explore and search the contents of individual blocks, view transaction histories, and check the balance of any given address.

To search for any smart contract information, just enter its contract address in the search field and press enter. A new page will load giving you information about the contract. Important pieces of information you want to look at are as follows:

Max Total Supply: This is the maximum supply of tokens from the smart contract.

Holders: This is the total of individual wallets that hold the tokens from the smart contract. This is important information as you can see whether the token supply is fairly distributed among all holders. Please note, the wallet addresses with a document icon are smart contracts themselves. These wallets can represent Decentralized Applications (dApp) like Uniswap, PancakeSwap, or Tokens lockers.

Transfers: The total transfer on the blockchain since the smart contract was deployed. The more this number is high, the more active the contract is.

Contract: This is the token contract address.

Official Site: The link to the website of the project behind the token and smart contract.

Social Profiles: Links to social media profiles of the project.

See below information about Paribus token $PBX as seen on Etherscan, a blockchain explorer for Ethereum.

Paribus token as seen on Etherscan

Smart contracts use cases

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Smart contracts are self-executing contracts with the terms of the agreement between buyer and seller being directly written into lines of code. They allow for the automation of processes, enforce the negotiation or performance of a contract and reduce the need for intermediaries.

  • Supply Chain Management: Smart contracts can be used to track the movement of goods, ensuring that payment is only released once the goods have been received and verified.
  • Decentralized Finance (DeFi): Smart contracts are used to create decentralized exchanges, stablecoins, and lending platforms, enabling users to take control of their financial assets without the need for intermediaries.
  • Real Estate: Smart contracts can be used to manage property transactions, from listing to sale and beyond, reducing the need for intermediaries and ensuring a more secure and efficient process.
  • Healthcare: Smart contracts can be used to securely store and manage patient health records, enabling healthcare providers to easily access a patient’s medical history.
  • Government: Smart contracts can be used to create transparent and secure voting systems, reducing the potential for fraud and improving the accuracy of election results.
  • Gaming: Smart contracts can be used to develop decentralized gaming platforms, enabling players to own and trade in-game items and assets, and ensuring a fair gaming experience.
  • Copyright and Royalties: Smart contracts can be used to automate the payment of royalties to content creators, ensuring that they receive the correct amount of compensation for their work.

These are just a few of the many potential use cases for smart contracts. As the technology continues to evolve, the possibilities are likely to expand further.

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