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What is Web3?

September 04, 2022 - 13 min read

The “decentralized” web, also known as “Web3” functions similarly to the internet you already know and love, with some vital technical distinctions. 

Web3 still offers the same websites and apps that users are used to, including social media, video streaming services, news websites, financial calculators, and more. Web3 is a distributed, permissionless, and trustworthy network where data from the network can be accessed from several locations simultaneously and where Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning can be utilized.

Web3 Explained

It refers to the growth of online usage and interaction, which involves transforming the web into a database with the integration of Distributed Ledger Technology (DLT). That data can help to create smart contracts based on the individual’s demands.

Web3 focuses on enhanced interoperability, decentralized deployment of user-generated content, and blockchain-based tokenization. Your data is stored on your crypto wallet on Web3. You’ll use your wallet to interact with apps and communities on Web3 and take your data with you when you log out. In theory, because you own this data, you can determine whether or not to monetize it.

Web3 envisions an internet in which individuals own what they create and may participate in decentralized networks instead of data and content being centralized in a limited set of firms. Many innovators, researchers, and entrepreneurs hope to model the internet after blockchains, similar to cryptocurrencies. Web3 will essentially become more interactive and decentralized. Web3 supporters expect that it will result in greater shared value among internet users. To establish ownership of their work, users will be able to earn tokens, which can even be used as currency.

Web3 History

Web3 is not the same as Tim Berners-Lee‘s concept in 1999 for a semantic web. The meaning of Web3 in scenarios using blockchain technology is distinct from the sense that Berners-Lee described the semantic web as a component of Web3 in 2006. Gavin Wood, the founder of Polkadot and co-founder of Ethereum, is credited with coining the term “Web3,” which refers to a “decentralized online ecosystem built on blockchain.” In the year 2021, the concept of Web3 began to gain traction.

The “read-only web” is known as Web1, while the “participative social web” is known as Web2, and the “read, write, and execute web” is known as Web3. During this stage of web engagement and utilization, users move away from centralized platforms such as Facebook, Google, or Twitter and toward decentralized networks that are nearly anonymous.

Web3 Architecture

Let us start from the bottom:

  1. Blockchain

When it comes to choosing a blockchain to build on, it is one of the most challenging decisions to make. Numerous elements are at play here, including decentralization, transaction throughput, gas pricing, ecosystem/interoperability, and many others.

In other words, it’s built to be a state machine that everyone on the planet may access and write to. As a result, this machine is owned jointly by everyone in the network rather than by a single entity. For example, the Ethereum Virtual Machine executes the smart contract logic and processes state changes on this globally accessible state machine.

The front end is responsible for defining the UI logic but also connects with the application logic expressed in smart contracts. The communication between the front end and smart contracts is a little more involved than the diagram above suggests.

  1. Blockchain Node

A server is required before deploying an application to a production environment. For blockchains, this function is performed by a blockchain node. Participants in a blockchain network or devices that run “blockchain software” are called “blockchain nodes.” As a result, they have been permitted to monitor the distributed ledger and act as communication hubs for the many functions performed by the network. Nodes can connect within the network via a protocol known as P2P (Peer to Peer), which also enables the transfer of the information regarding transactions and new blocks. Every node that makes up the Ethereum network stores a copy of all the states on the Ethereum state machine, together with the related data and code for each smart contract.

Interacting with one of these nodes is required whenever we wish to change the data or the code stored on a blockchain. Any node in the network can broadcast a request for a transaction to be carried out on the EVM due to this.

  1. Decentralized Database

The InterPlanetary File System (IPFS) is a decentralized data storage and retrieval system. Therefore, the IPFS system disperses and stores data in a peer-to-peer network as opposed to storing the data in a centralized database. So, getting the data whenever you require won’t be difficult.

For instance, Filecoin is the name of the incentive layer that is included in IPFS. This layer offers nodes worldwide an incentive to store and access the data, as mentioned earlier. Arweave is yet another alternative with the primary goal of preserving data indefinitely. When it comes to hosting these file storage systems, you can use platforms such as Filecoin, Skynet, Storj, and 0Chain.

  1. Authentication in Web3

Authentication, in all sincerity, is one of the features considered to be of the utmost importance for Web3. Access to a user’s wallet and the ability to conduct even the simplest of transactions are inaccessible if the user is not logged in to the smart contract. It is important to remember that signing a transaction is the prerequisite for every interaction with a blockchain. In Web3, we do not have access to the user’s data; however, we do have wallets (which may be thought of as a covering for a private key), and cryptographic signatures are used to verify ownership of blockchain addresses. As a Web3 developer, it is necessary to understand how to gain access to and interact with a user’s address and private key.

Once a user loses their private key to the wallet address, there is no way for anybody else to recover it for them. This is one of the most exciting aspects of owning a blockchain wallet. This is both informative and terrifying at the same time. There are many anecdotes of crypto billionaires who have lost everything because they stored their private keys on a hard drive that went missing.

Features of Web3

Semantic Web:

The semantic web improves online technology by allowing users to produce, distribute, and link material based on word meanings rather than keywords or numbers. It’s questionable whether blockchain and cryptocurrencies will fully integrate or become the dominant currency. In Web3, content providers would obtain a cryptocurrency token each time someone visited their work. Smart contracts facilitate application sharing, transactions, and censorship-resistant file storage. It would need to change business behavior and empower consumers and producers.

Web3 uses semantic web principles and natural language processing to make user interaction more intuitive. It also has trustless/permissionless systems, such as blockchain and peer-to-peer networks.

Artificial Intelligence:

By integrating enormous processing capacity with natural language processing, computers in Web3 will be able to analyze data in the same way humans do, leading to more accurate and timely results.

Intellectual development occurs as a result of a focus on user demands. Web2 has similar features but is still largely human-based, which opens the door to dishonest tactics like biased product reviews, manipulated ratings, and so on.

Unfortunately, it is not difficult for a business to pay many people to write positive testimonials about its excellent offerings. As a result, AI needs to learn to discern between genuine and fraudulent content on the internet before it can be relied upon as a dependable source of information.

With the help of semantic web ideas and NLP, computers in Web3 can comprehend data much the way people do. Machine learning, a subfield of AI that seeks to mimic human understanding through data and algorithmic optimization, will also play a role in Web3.

Decentralization: 

This is one of the fundamental hypotheses of Web3. In Web2, computers use HTTP in the form of specific web addresses to search for information stored at a single, centralized location and typically housed on a single server. Since the information would be found on Web3 depending on the document’s substance, it would be possible to keep it in numerous locations simultaneously, leading to the decentralization of the data. This would result in the vast datasets currently maintained by internet giants such as Google and Meta being broken down, and consumers would be given more control.

Connectivity and ubiquity

With Web3, information and content are more connected and pervasive, accessed by many applications and everyday devices, such as the Internet of Things.

Web3 will eliminate Web2’s flaws. Semantic metadata improves Web3’s linking. The user experience improves by using all the available data. Web3 uses IoT sensors to make Internet access anywhere, anytime, without a computer or smartphone. Being everywhere at once is ubiquitous. It’s widespread.

Web3 makes the Internet available anywhere, anytime. IoT will provide new forms of smart items beyond PCs and cell phones, like in Web2. Your identity, most of your possessions, all your data, and every software capacity you have a right to utilize will all be connected and able to work together.

Why is Web3 Preferred?

Web3 will be an improved replacement for the current internet because it includes:

  1. Interoperability

Interoperability is a crucial component of Web3. With a decentralized network, it will be simpler for applications to function on various devices and platforms, such as TVs, cell phones, smart roads, etc. In addition, with Web3, it will be easy for programmers to develop new web-based applications.

Through interoperability, many blockchain protocols can interact and share data in real time. As a result, it is simpler to use several blockchain networks because chains may communicate and share information.

Your Polkadot web wallet is useless to a DeFi network operating on the Ethereum chain. It’s possible that you’d like to use smart contracts on Cardano but would prefer to keep most of your funds in the more secure Avalanche ecosystem. This and much more are feasible now because of Web3’s compatibility.

Interoperability is made possible by a cross-chain design, which allows for efficient, decentralized, feature-set, and security trade-offs between several blockchains. This can enhance chain performance, lessen the likelihood of chain fragmentation, and facilitate the free movement of users and features throughout different blockchains.

  1. Self-governing

The control of Web3 does not need to be exercised by a single body. It’s possible that larger firms won’t have complete control over the internet for much longer. As a direct consequence of this, decentralized applications, also known as dApps, are incapable of being censored or restricted. In practice, a centralized body or government does not determine the number of cryptocurrency tokens available for purchase. Additionally, it is connected to using cryptocurrencies as a form of exchange. Using the blockchain, transactions may be carried out, authenticated, and published on the public ledger without the involvement of a third party in any of these processes.

  1. Permissionless

A blockchain address can be generated and used by anyone. To overstate the importance of having access to permissionless blockchains would be a gross understatement. Permissionless blockchains, also known as trustless or public blockchains, are decentralized ledgers that allow anybody to take part in the validation of transactions and data using a distributed consensus mechanism. They’re wholly distributed across agents you can’t trust.

There will be no restrictions on users based on factors like their socioeconomic status, geographical location, sexual orientation, or gender. Moreover, sending money and other valuables instantly across international boundaries is possible in the digital age.

In contrast to permissionless blockchains, where data is shared between completely unknown nodes, these systems are spread over a set of trusted participants. Also, tokens and digital assets are possible but uncommon, unlike the permissionless model.

How is Web3 Different From Previous Forms of the Web?

Most websites on the internet were static, read-only web pages during the early years of the World Wide Web, which is today referred to as Web1. This indicates that the pages were not meant to be interacted with in any way; instead, they were designed to be read. Consumers are the only type of user. The problem with the first version of the web was that it required a significant degree of technical knowledge to create your web page and contribute to this version of the net. This made it difficult for those who did not have this level of expertise.

The web version we are currently utilizing is called Web2. This version of the web introduced functionality for users to “write” as well as read. The number of clicks and comments on a post provides web page owners with data that indicates how popular the content is. In addition, it was the catalyst for the development of social media and democratized content production for users who previously lacked the necessary technical expertise.

While these platforms allow access to content creation, they also capture our data and utilize it to determine what other content we may be interested in consuming based on our preferences. In addition, businesses sell this information in various advertisements to generate additional revenue. The users of this particular iteration of the web are not merely customers; they are also the product being sold.

Web3 operates on a blockchain-based architecture and makes an effort to decentralize Web2. The implementation of decentralization makes use of both smart contracts and tokens. Web3 applications can now function without relying on a trusted third party, thanks to smart contracts. Tokens are used to transfer value from companies to individual users and builders.

Applications of Web3

Some of the promising applications of Web3 are:

  1. Polkadot

Polkadot is an open-source blockchain project for the decentralized Web3 to realize the multichain vision for the decentralized web. Polkadot is distinct from the other sophisticated blockchains of the third generation because it possesses characteristics that set it apart from the competition. These characteristics include real interoperability, parachains, parathreads, excellent energy efficiency, and user-driven governance. Furthermore, Polkadot’s environment makes it easier for developers to create advanced dApps and solutions that can seamlessly support a wide variety of Web3 projects.

  1. Everledger

Everledger is a decentralized digital global registry that aims to provide each user with a record that is entirely their own. Users can save data on the cloud, which they can retrieve at any time. Users, banks, open markets, and insurance companies are all protected from fraud by this system.

This company records costly items such as diamonds, wine, and gold. Everledger maintains a record of when and where an item was used, beginning with the moment it was recorded into the global supply chain and continuing until it was logged out of the chain. By scanning the Everledger sticker, customers may protect the integrity of their purchases using the Everledger platform.

Since it guards against fraud without using complex passwords or personal data, this is a huge step forward in protecting personal information on the internet.

  1. Storj

Storj is a decentralized storage solution that allows users to safely store their data in a manner that is both redundant and fault-tolerant. Storj is currently among the most well-known distributed storage platforms available. In addition to that, it has a long and illustrious history. Anyone can use Storj to store their data.

Cloud storage offers many of the same benefits that cloud storage does, but it does so across a more distributed network. The ability to upload and download an endless amount of data at any given time is one of the many advantages offered by Storj. It is also open-source and does not cost anything to use.

One click is all required to get started using it, but anyone can do it. Users are at the center of the payment method since they can pay for their purchases.

The Storj currency serves as the driving force behind the Storj platform. Storj users can assign an expiration date to their data, rendering it “self-destructive” in some senses. Even though this is still a relatively new piece of technology, several of the most well-known companies in the sector, such as Dropbox and Comcast, have already formed partnerships with Storj to integrate their solution

  1. Axie Infinity

Axie Infinity is a modern Web3 gaming platform that utilizes a play-to-earn paradigm. This model allows users to play, acquire, and exchange non-fungible token (NFT)-based game assets such as weapons, skins, cars, and so on, as well as collectibles. Users must undergo a multi-step process before accessing the Axie Infinity platform. This process includes setting up an Axie Infinity account and connecting the wallet.

  1. Brave Browser

The Brave browser is a new web browser that promises to bring ad-blocking and privacy features to mobile devices, where they have previously only been available on desktop computers.

The Mozilla Foundation is responsible for developing the most popular web browsers, but Brave Browser is a faster and safer alternative. It has been called “the most secure browser ever designed” because of its safety.

The Brave Browser is a brand-new web browser that uses blockchain technology and is open source. Its developers claim it would protect users’ privacy by eliminating intrusive advertisements and trackers.

It also contains anti-cryptojacking features, enabling users to support the websites they like to visit without consuming their allotted data. Furthermore, consumers can also sell their data in exchange for cryptocurrencies through this platform.

Final Thoughts

Web3, often known as Web 3.0, is the concept behind the next iteration of the World Wide Web. It is the node on a decentralized network where most users will join, and it is also the node where users will have control over their data. Web3 is planning to launch several innovative technologies, including intelligent systems, semantic web, decentralization, metaverse, digital assets, and others. The majority of people’s computing experiences are getting better as a result of Web3. For example, Web3 made web browsing easier. Thanks to new methodologies, search engines are now able to have a better understanding of what users are looking for. People don’t usually consider how challenging it might be for machines to comprehend human language.

To level up and gain a deeper knowledge of all things related to the future of the cryptocurrency industry, check out the latest content in the Supra Academy section.

References

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