Web 3.0 — part-1

In the past few months, There seems to be a lot of focus, discussions, tweets, content, and updates about Web 3.0. I was curious about What is Web 3.0? Why is there recent hype and its relationship with Blockchain?

I will be sharing a series of notes about Web 3.0. In this first part, I will share my notes on the history of the web, the current state, and share my thoughts on How can a standard Software Engineer be ready for Web 3.0 future in subsequent parts.

What is the Web?

Though the Internet & Web are interchangeably used, they aren’t the same, however, they are related.

Internet: The Internet is a huge network of computers all over the world that are connected together enabling users to share information.

Web (WWW — World wide web, W3): The web is a collection of web pages or websites found on the internet.

Web Browser: The web browser such as Chrome, Safari, etc. is a client tool that uses the Internet to access the web.

The Web connected the world and made it much easier for people to get information, share and communicate. It allowed people to share their work and thoughts through social networking sites, blogs, and video sharing.

Prior to web & internet, the information was shared and retrieved via hard mediums such as newspapers, books, libraries, tool manuals, human-to-human discussions, etc. I still remember my childhood days when I used to always carry 2 pounds “Oxford dictionary” with me wherever I go to look up meanings to words, search for a word through the index, my visits to nearby libraries to read books. Thanks to Google, the Web & the internet — it is super easy now.

Evolution of Web

Here is where the confusion begins, we generally do know that the web has evolved through the years however, it did evolve by versions.

Web 1.0 (Read-only information)

Between the years 1991–2004, the internet hosted a bunch of static pages, users only used to read the content i.e. users weren’t able to view analytics, interact with posts, make a profit by ads, log in to websites, etc. Over the end of the Web 1.0 era, there was Flash & JavaScript enabled to step into Web 2.0 to add more interactions with websites.

“During Web 1.0 era, Users were just consumers who’ve consumed read-only information, but cannot contribute to it, with information maintained by a centralized authority”

Web 2.0 (Read-Write information)

From around 2004 until now, the web evolved a lot, one of the major updates to Web 1.0 is it added an ability for users to interact with websites. This created opportunities for new start-ups to emerge including apps like YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, etc. that provided centralized social network services for users enabling companies to make money/profits via targeted ads i.e. when you consume free services “You are the product” i.e. you are sharing your personal data so that companies can use the data for ads and make profits i.e. “lack of privacy”.

“During current Web 2.0 era, Users are able to consume information and interact or contribute to it, with information maintained by a central entity”

“If you are not paying for it, you are the product”

Web 3.0 (Read-Write and Own information)

Web 3.0 is the future of the internet, it works with the concept of the decentralized web that is privacy conscious i.e. there is no centralized entity that owns the information, it is the user who owns or controls the information. It works with a giant network of connections to information via Blockchain, As there is no central authority, there is no single point of failure. Web 3.0 is different from its earlier versions due to the following reasons

  1. Openness: The web 3.0 network is built using a set of open-source software contributed by developers.
  2. Trustless: Participants in Web 3.0 networks can interact with each other publicly or privately without the need of a trusted third party.
  3. Permissionless: Participants can interact with each other without seeking permission from a governing body.

Key Features

  1. Ubiquity: Ubiquity means being or having the capacity to be everywhere, especially at the same time. Web 3.0 is fundamentally Ubiquitous and it aggregated with the power of IoT (Internet of things) enables users to use many devices connected to the network.
  2. Semantic Web: The next evolution of the Web involves the Semantic Web. The semantic web improves web technologies in order to generate, share and connect content through search and analysis based on the ability to understand the meaning of words, rather than on keywords or numbers.
  3. Artificial Intelligence: Combining this capability with natural language processing, in Web 3.0, computers can understand information like humans in order to provide faster and more relevant results. They become more intelligent to satisfy the needs of users.
  4. 3D Graphics: The three-dimensional design is being used extensively in websites and services in Web 3.0. Museum guides, computer games, e-commerce, geospatial contexts, etc. are all examples that use 3D graphics.
  5. Connected experiences: With Web 3.0, information is more connected thanks to semantic metadata. As a result, the user experience evolves to another level of connectivity that leverages all the available information.

Web 3.0 is more focused on using innovative technologies like machine learning and AI to create more personalized content for each user.

Examples of Web 3.0 AI technology include Apple with Siri and Amazon through Alexa.

How is Web 3.0 connected with Blockchain?

Blockchain: Blockchains are made up of blocks that store information. Each block has a unique “hash” that differentiates it from other blocks. These blocks are then connected by a chain in order. The information stored in these blocks is permanent, which makes it a very secure way to complete online transactions.

The blockchain serves as the foundation of Web 3.0. Since blockchain is a decentralized system, there is no single point of control that could be easily hacked. For Web 3.0, this means that individual websites and the internet, in general, would be much more secure against attacks. Users would not have to worry about their information being deleted or compromised. Together, Web 3.0 and blockchain will allow for better cryptocurrency trading and mining.

Web 3.0 Experts are saying that the Blockchain + Web 3.0 combination will redefine the “Future of the Internet” or the next-generation evolution of the Web that is de-centralized and adds user ownership to information without the need of a central entity.

If you are a Full-stack software engineer and looking to understand how you can upskill and learn Web 3.0, I have a piece of good news — You can use your UI framework skills (ReactJS, VueJS, etc.) to build Web 3.0 apps that leverage Blockchain, however, the backend integrations and API layer change architecturally i.e. you don’t need to start from zero :)

In my next blog part-2, I will add my notes on the architecture of Web 3.0 end-to-end app (Dapps — Decentralized application).

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