There is an overwhelming sense of technological advancement every year, as we are introduced to new technologies, innovations and change that constantly disrupts and transforms the way we live, work and interact. Words such as blockchain, Web3, NFTs, and cryptos are thrown at us at every corner, however very few grasp its implications to the full extent. As much as all these technologies are closely intertwined, the implications vary and to understand each thoroughly, we have to first look at the evolution of the Web itself, over the past few decades.
WEB 3.0 is defined as the third generation of the World Wide Web, a foundation layer for the internet that started with WEB 1.0, offering a read-only web, where users could only access information on web browsers, with the material delivered primarily in static text or graphic format. There were no search engines and the user experience was limited. Most of the pages were joined by hyperlinks and users could only access single files with simple web pages, lacking any dynamic content, advanced features or software integration.
The launch of Web 2.0 opened new frontiers, allowing us to read-write and upload content, communicate and interact via online platforms and make use of various tools and software. The rise of mobile and social media allowed us to become content creators, constantly posting and sharing on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Youtube, Tiktok, etc.. However, the data accumulated in WEB 2.0 became highly centralized, mostly circulating in the hands of Google, Facebook and other tech giants, who make most profit by targeted advertising, turning clicks into value. Furthermore, by allowing companies to track our data, we grant access to our personal information and identity, hence diminishing our very perception of privacy. Most of our data is collected and sold to third parties without our consent or understanding of its true value. Naturally, it all leads to rising concerns about privacy, the misuse of data among centralized entities and the need for a more transparent, malleable and decentralized system, which happens to coalesce in WEB 3.0.
All you need to know about WEB 3.0
Driven by machine learning and artificial intelligence, WEB 3.0 employs blockchain, a decentralized peer-to-peer network, where data is stored and distributed among various devices without the need for a centralized server. Users can stay anonymous, retain control of their data or sell directly, avoiding being tracked by intermediaries. It is up to the users to authorize permissions and approve transactions, making it also more safe from any unauthorized activity.
The web aims to improve content generation by understanding and learning data, rather than relying on keywords and numbers. Alongside AI, computers are becoming more powerful and will offer more human-like behavior over time, providing deeper insights and advanced analysis.
Web 3.0 will make better use of 3D graphics. Already prominent in web 2.0, there are tons of websites and platforms which offer stunning 3D visuals, starting from games to e-commerce, fashion, architecture, digital art and VR/AR. Metaverse and online gaming push more interactivity, engagement and immersiveness, raising the need for more-realistic cyber-worlds, where people can interact through avatars and conduct daily tasks virtually.
WEB 3.0 also brings ubiquity, which allows us to connect to the internet from anywhere via all kinds of devices, not limited to personal computers and smartphones. This may lead to the creation of vast interconnected networks without any boundaries, surveillance or restrictions.
Web 3.0 is built to make use of decentralized financial applications(DeFi), governed by cryptocurrencies. As digital assets and NFTs are gaining momentum, there is an increased need for secure, fast and anonymous transactions. Besides, cryptocurrencies offer monetary incentives in tokens, for participating, creating and building specific products and online services, previously offered by cloud providers.
Web 3.0 is a natural evolution of the web and may offer tremendous opportunities, though now would be the best time to reexamine and rethink some of the existing business models centered around finance, technology, data and innovation. Upcoming decades may bring metaverses, wearable tech, advanced gamification elements and the integration of our physical and digital worlds, built on decentralized platforms and applications. Blockchain and cryptocurrency will slowly change the way we do business, communicate and share personal information. The ownership of data will become more valuable for the regular user, giving more control over their input and a potential to earn a piece by becoming a data shareholder. The world may become one big interconnected web, therefore it is vital to acknowledge our involvement in it, how it may benefit us as a society and transform our lives substantially. Therefore, at MapMetrics we believe in human-centric data, transparency, empowerment and the equal distribution of wealth for building more powerful, interconnected communities.