What is Web3? Explained by Digimagg

You may have encountered discussions about "Web3" and its touted significance for the future of the internet and society.But what is Web3?

Mar 14, 2024 - 15:24
Mar 16, 2024 - 10:29
What is Web3? Explained by Digimagg

You may have encountered discussions about "Web3" and its purported role as the future of the internet and society. But what exactly is Web3, and is it deserving of all the attention it's receiving?

Web3 isn’t a specific technology; rather, it represents a perspective on the internet and its evolving nature. It explores the integration of online and physical worlds through future technologies and principles.Embedded within Web3 are concepts such as the Web 3.0 blockchain (including Web3 crypto), NFTs, and the Metaverse. It's important to note that "Web 3.0" isn't universally defined; there's no authoritative definition of it. The internet is constantly evolving, and our understanding of it will continue to change over time.

Web 1.0 and Web 2.0

Tim Berners-Lee initiated the development of the World Wide Web (WWW) in 1989, marking the start of a remarkable transformation. Initially, it comprised basic text and hyperlinks. However, with advancements in internet speed and technological sophistication, the web has evolved significantly over time.

Web 1.0 

During the early stages of the internet, websites were primarily static, with content served from a single server, often located in a business's physical offices. Some pages featured dynamic elements built using technologies like SSI and CGI, while formatting relied heavily on tables and frames.

Culturally, the internet existed as a separate realm from everyday life, with many individuals striving to maintain anonymity online. Real-life identities were typically kept separate from online personas, except when necessary. While a few businesses conducted online transactions, it remained relatively uncommon, with only major enterprises boasting a significant web presence.

Web 2.0

It's undeniable that the internet has undergone significant changes since 2005. However, a notable cultural shift occurred in 2005, profoundly altering our perception and utilization of the internet. Increased adoption and enhanced internet speeds fundamentally bridged the gap between the digital realm and the real world.

As a result, the internet transitioned from being predominantly static to more dynamic. More businesses embraced online platforms, and the emergence of social media linked real-life identities with online personas. This integration of the internet into our daily lives became more pronounced, shaping our society in profound ways.

The Fundamental Tenets of Web3

Similar to the evolution from Web 1.0 to Web 2.0, Web3 encompasses a blend of ideologies, values, and technological advancements. While Web 2.0 witnessed a centralization of the internet dominated by major corporations like Amazon and Google, Web3 envisions a decentralized internet—emphasizing scalability, privacy, security, and peer-to-peer interactions. Key technologies associated with Web3 include NFTs and cryptocurrencies. Moreover, Web3 extends the integration of the internet into everyday life, incorporating concepts like the Metaverse, virtual reality, augmented reality, and MMO games, blurring the boundaries between the digital realm and reality even further compared to Web 2.0.

What makes Web3 significant?

Web3 holds significance for several key reasons. Firstly, economically, it encompasses various prominent technologies, echoing the DotCom bubble era. Simply mentioning "crypto" could once secure Series A funding. 

Secondly, Web3 tackles concerns about the current internet landscape, which is heavily controlled by large corporations that may not prioritize users' interests.Lastly, Web3 reflects a societal trend: the increasingly blurred boundaries between the internet and everyday life.

Challenges and Critiques of Web3

Not everyone embraces Web3, with some viewing it as a mere buzzword lacking clear definition. Critics like Jack Dorsey suggest that the term is often used too loosely, leading to confusion. Additionally, certain Web3 technologies, such as cryptocurrency, are seen as exacerbating social inequalities rather than fostering true decentralization. Furthermore, the involvement of major corporations like Facebook in developing aspects of the "Metaverse" raises concerns about ownership and control. While some proponents support the overarching concept of Web3, they question the suitability of current leading technologies like blockchain, NFTs, and the Metaverse. One fundamental criticism is that Web3 appears to perpetuate artificial scarcity, as seen with the commercialization of digital assets like virtual land and NFTs. Despite these critiques, the debate underscores philosophical questions about the alignment of blockchain, NFTs, and the Metaverse with the principles of Web3.

Blockchain, NFTs, and the Metaverse of Web3

The implications of Web3 infrastructure encompass blockchain technology, cryptocurrency, NFTs, and the Metaverse. Current regulatory changes are reshaping our perception of these technologies and their future role in society.

Metaverse: Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality

The concept of the "Metaverse" has long been in existence, although it has recently gained prominence with Facebook's association. Essentially, the Metaverse represents a digital realm that intersects with our physical world. With the advent of virtual and augmented reality technologies, the realization of the Metaverse is becoming increasingly plausible.

The shift towards virtual and augmented reality suggests a potential transition towards a digital era where online environments evolve into fully interactive, three-dimensional worlds. While we have yet to fully reach this stage, numerous companies are exploring the possibilities, such as creating virtual reality malls or immersive experiences like VR museums and zoos.The development of the "Metaverse" is an ongoing process, with technological advancements continually pushing its boundaries.

Blockchain Technology: Cryptocurrency and NFTs

You might have heard that almost anything can operate on the blockchain. While this holds true, the blockchain is actually a simpler technology than commonly perceived. It functions as a transparent, peer-to-peer ledger system. The flaws associated with it mostly stem from implementation rather than the technology itself.

Cryptocurrencies utilize tokens transferred via the blockchain, aiming for true global decentralization: a currency owned and verified collectively. Due to their decentralized nature and initial lack of regulation, many cryptocurrencies faced scams and security breaches. Bitcoin, the first widely recognized cryptocurrency, struggled to achieve full decentralization due to its heavy reliance on marketplaces and repositories, making it challenging for individuals to download the entire blockchain required for verification with peers.

NFTs operate similarly to cryptocurrencies but allow the trading of various items using non-fungible tokens instead of crypto tokens. These items range from art pieces to legal contracts, utilizing blockchain as a ledger system to record transactions in a decentralized, peer-to-peer manner.

Some popular Web3 cryptocurrency applications include:

  • Coinbase Commerce
  • Cryptominded
  • Robinhood Crypto
  • Lemon.io
  • Cryptokitties

Understanding Web3 Cryptocurrency

Web3 should not be conflated with The Web3 Project, Web3 Crypto, or Web3 Tokens. While these cryptocurrency and blockchain technologies are termed Web3, they do not encompass the broader concept of Web3.

How to Engage with Web3

Approaching Web3 with skepticism is common, especially considering the dismissals from figures like Elon Musk. However, Web3 encompasses various technologies ranging from underdeveloped to highly disruptive. Despite its current state, Web3's evolution seems inevitable, much like the transition to Web 2.0. While it may not exclusively involve cryptocurrency, NFTs, or the Metaverse, these elements are part of its trajectory.

The ongoing integration of the internet into our daily lives, through devices, IoT solutions, and social media, propels Web3 forward. Individuals engage with Web3 by innovating new technologies, acquiring skills in VR/AR development, and investing in related startups. Although the technology itself may undergo changes, the philosophical and social implications of Web3 are likely to significantly impact society.

The Future of Web3

You might embark on building the next Web3 platform or simply invest in emerging opportunities. The transition from Web 2.0 to Web 1.0 wasn't a monumental shift; if you're active on social media, you're likely already encountering Web3 elements.Amid discussions of Web3 technologies lies its fundamental essence—a redefinition of our internet experience. In the Web 1.0 era, the internet was seen as a passing fancy or a niche interest. With Web 2.0, it evolved into an indispensable yet distinct realm for gaming, remote work, and socializing.

Web3 marks the onset of a blurred distinction between the online and offline worlds. This fusion is evident in our seamless transitions between digital and physical realms, facilitated by social networks, online dating, and remote work.Looking ahead, we anticipate refinements and regulatory measures for existing technologies as we delve deeper into the Web3 landscape.

What does Web3 signify?

Web3 represents a fresh approach to internet engagement, introducing novel technologies that aim to decentralize the internet and empower everyday users. However, Web3 is still in its nascent stages, with its associated technologies undergoing refinement.

For those intrigued by the underlying technology behind Web3, exploring options like:

- Participating in bootcamps focused on cryptocurrencies, NFTs, and blockchain technology.
- Conducting research into Web3 technologies such as the Metaverse and virtual reality development.

The landscape of Web3 is evolving, presenting abundant opportunities and potential. To become a significant contributor to this emerging paradigm, delving into blockchain technology is essential.

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