Forgive the noob question, but I have just started seriously looking into block chain and bitcoin.
I tried to implement a very, very basic version of what I understood the block chain to be to understand it better, and eventually found out that bitcoin does not store account balances. It instead references previous transactions for inputs and outputs.
This then led me to reading about the Merkle tree, and how all transactions are derived from the root of the Merkle tree. Does this mean that block chain technology does not actually represent a chain, but rather a tree structure where a certain number of transactions in a specific sub-tree constitute a block of transactions? Or have I just misunderstood it? The very fact that its called blockchain technology is throwing me off.