Fortune has published an excerpt from Blockchain Revolution: How the Technology behind bitcoin is Changing Money, Business, and the World.

The excerpt discusses how blockchains create a “World Wide Ledger” of value, e.g. money and property. From explaining the history of Nick Szabo’s “The God Protocol” to Bitcoin, the Tapscotts lay the foundation for the Trust Protocol—”a trustworthy global platform” for exchanging value.

This protocol is the foundation of a growing number of global distributed ledgers called blockchains—of which the Bitcoin blockchain is the largest. While the technology is complicated, the main idea is simple. Blockchains enable us to send money directly and safely from me to you, without going through a bank, a credit card company, or PayPal.

Read the entire excerpt on Fortune

Photo Illustration by Thomas Trutschel/Photothek via Getty Images