What is web3 anyway?
Before web3, we had web1 and web2, so let’s start there.
Web1.0 was the first iteration of the World Wide Web and is in its nature a ‘read-only web’ or ‘Static Web’.
It basically allows us to search for information and read it. Users cannot interact with each other or contribute their own content.
For businesses, web1 is the brick-and-mortar approach applied to the web. You create a website to display what you have to offer. Your customer comes along and buys something off your website and then leaves. Or they read the information you provide and then get in touch with you to learn more about your product or service.
As you may realise now, the majority of the internet actually still operates at the web1 stage!
Web2.0 is the ‘read-write’ web or ‘Dynamic Web’. Now users can interact with each other and contribute their own content.
Social media platforms are the purest manifestation of web2.0 as their entire value proposition relies on these two things. However, this more participatory Internet also means that the big platforms now own all of our data which is becoming more and more a concern.
Enter Web 3.0 or web3: the ‘read-write-execute’ web or ‘Decentralised Web’. Web3 is meant to be a more autonomous, intelligent, and open internet where data isn’t owned by centralised entities anymore. It is the individuals themselves who own and govern pieces of the Internet.
Web3 does not require ‘permission’, everyone can (technically) participate. It also doesn’t rely on ‘trust’, meaning you don’t have to place authority in someone else, hoping they will do the right thing (with the data you give them, for example).
What web3 does require and relies on are so-called ‘smart contracts’.
Smart contracts are self-executing software agreements, i.e. pieces of code that run on a certain blockchain and execute automatically when a relevant set of terms are met.
As such, these contracts can independently verify and perform a transaction between different parties (users). There is no need for a specific company or individual to act as an intermediary anymore. Everything operates with higher transparency and accuracy as well as less room for manipulation and biases.
That’s all for this week. Hope you’ve learnt something new!
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