Introduction to Web 3.0
What is Web 3?
In a one-liner – it’s the next era of the Internet. Web 3.0 (commonly called Web3) is a shift towards a more decentralized Internet.
Web3 establishes itself through new technologies, such as cryptocurrencies, virtual and augmented reality, AI, and more. Empowered by new technologies, the Web3 movement is spearheaded by a shift in how we, view and value the Internet. Web3 is about creating an Internet that works for the people, owned by the people.
The movement aims to create open, connected, intelligent websites and web apps with an improved machine-based understanding of data. Decentralization and digital economies also play an important role in Web 3.0, as they allow us to place value on the content created on the net. It's also important to understand that Web 3.0 is a changing concept. There is no single definition, and its exact meaning can differ from person to person.
The evolution of the Web
Web 1.0 – In the 1990s users were still only able to passively browse content online, i.e., whatever the website offered the user, without any interaction, as in the case of portals such as Google and Yahoo. We refer to this as the Web 1.0 period, when users were passively fed information from websites.
Web 2.0 – With the development of the Internet and arrival of Web 2.0 in 2004, 2 way communication was enabled, allowing users to generate content independently, interact and collaborate with others on websites such as Facebook, blogs and other social media platforms.
Web 3.0 – The current state of Web 2.0 is gradually showing its drawbacks: it is becoming more and more centralized, with data security and privacy protection issues becoming more common from incidents such as the Facebook user data breach a few years ago. The emergence of Web3.0 is to solve these problems and lead us to a more “efficient, fair, credible and valuable” Internet. Here, digital identities, assets and data return to individuals and become more decentralized.
Why we need Web 3
Web3 is about rearchitecting the existing services and products of the Internet so that they benefit people rather than entities. While it’s impossible to predict the future, one vision of a Web3 world is one that has open-source protocols at the foundation while businesses act as interfaces that provide convenient access and additional features. Web3 is an internet that is open for all users, built on open protocols and transparent blockchain networks. The way consumers interface with these protocols might be through blended applications that offer convenient ways to interact with the underlying technologies.
Data will still be used to drive decision making but will not be used against the consumer. Data rights will be protected rather than stomped over in search of profits. Incentive and market mechanisms will help ensure that information is trustworthy and verifiable.
A Web3 world will prioritize the individual rather than the wealthy elite and organizations of the world. The restructuring of systems and protocols will focus on democratization and decentralization.
The advantages of Web 3
1. No central point of control - Since intermediaries are removed from the equation, they will no longer control user data. This freedom reduces the risk of censorship by governments or corporations and cuts down the effectiveness of Denial-of-Service (DoS) attacks.
2. Increased information interconnectivity - As more products become connected to the Internet, larger data sets provide algorithms with more information to analyze. This can help them deliver more accurate information that accommodates the individual user's specific needs.
3. More efficient browsing - When using search engines, finding the best results have sometimes posed a challenge. However, they have become better at finding logically-relevant results based on search context and data over the years. This results in a more convenient web browsing experience that can help anyone find the exact information they need with ease.
4. Improved advertising and marketing - No one likes being bombarded with online ads. However, if the ads are relevant to your needs, they could be useful instead of being an annoyance. Web 3.0 aims to improve advertising by leveraging smarter AI systems and targeting specific audiences based on consumer data.
The disadvantages of Web 3
At present, Web3.0 still has problems such as
Blockchain network congestion.
High network costs being passed on to ordinary users.
Smart contract loopholes being exploited by hackers.
But this is because Web 3.0 concepts are more complex than Blockchain, Bitcoin, etc., and it is a new technology so it will take some time for new users to become proficient, making mainstream adoption slightly slower. However overall, the benefits far outweigh the downsides, and the challenges themselves aren’t exactly flaws but instead just some obstacles that can be overcome.
The use cases of Web 3
Innovative builders in Web 3.0 are targeting sectors such as public chains, storage, domain names, web browsing, etc. to meet the existing needs and pains of users.
Polkadot was created by Dr Gavin Wood to help solve the problem of cross-chain compatibility across various public chains in the era of blockchain 2.0. Polkadot not only enables cross-chain assets but also cross-chain information to create the infrastructure of Web 3.0.
The storage network Filecoin is a Web 3.0 protocol that creates a market for those who want to rent out their spare hard drive storage to those who need it.
The ad-blocking function of the Brave Browser project allows users to surf the Internet without being bothered by advertisements.
Users of the domain name board Handshake can use HNS to pay for registration and receive an encryption key as proof of domain ownership, where all domain name transactions through HNS will be recorded on the public chain.
Audius is a blockchain-based music streaming platform. The project aims to give artists and curators more control over their music creations.
Arweave is a Web3 protocol that offers data storage on a decentralized network of devices for blockchains
The Ethereum Name Service (ENS)is a naming service for wallet addresses and websites. It turns difficult to read strings of data into easily readable addresses. It works similarly to the Domain Name System (DNS) used for websites.
These are just a few of the many Web 3 use cases that are growing daily in numbers
Complete guide to Web 3: https://explodingtopics.com/blog/web3-guide
Video guide on Web 3: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nHhAEkG1y2U
Defining features of Web 3: https://www.expert.ai/blog/web-3-0/
Web 3 wiki: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Web3
Common Web 3 Terms:
Blockchain - A distributed, publicly accessible database that functions as a ledger to record digital transactions (such as records of a cryptocurrency transaction).
Wallet - A type of Dapp that is used for securely accessing and managing blockchain-based assets such as cryptocurrency or NFTs.
DEFI - or decentralized finance is a financial application built on blockchain technology that enables digital transactions between multiple parties.
DYOR - Stands for ‘do your own research’.