Web3 is the open-source ethic extended beyond code as static artifacts but rather as live organisms.
Crypto systems are interesting, they are “decentralized, jurisdictionless entities that exist entirely in cyberspace, maintained by a combination of cryptography, economics and social consensus” However, blockchain as a technology only enables decentralization, it doesn’t guarantee it.
“The point isn’t ‘web3’, it isn’t ‘decentralization’ for the word’s sake. The point is developing tools that allow us to leverage computers to collaborate more effectively. It’s about accountability and choosing for ourselves what to trust. It’s about withholding trust from strangers on the internet but holding out the belief that we can build a better way.” (Dan Finlay)
The cyberpunk spirit: the basic property of which adversarial conflict continues to heavily favour the defender. It should be much more expensive to destroy or disrupt than they are to use and maintain — Vitalkik Buterin
Of course, this is not perfect technology. I do have a few critiques on it as well.
- Public Goods
- Quadratic Funding
- Proof of stake
- Proof of work
We are in the process from changing platforms to protocols; the difference being that, in protocols, there is no central appeal.
Web1, Information Economy [1980s to 2000s]
Internet services were built on open protocols that were controlled by the internet community. Develops could generally rest assured that these protocols wouldn’t change much because they were commonly agreed on by the community.
Web2, Platform Economy [2000s to 2020s]
Internet as we know it today, companies that provide services in exchange for your personal data. Web2 enabled us to enjoy P2P interactions on a global scale, but always with a middleman: a platform acting as a trusted intermediary between two people who do not know or trust each other.
General migration from open services to more sophisticated, centralized services
Effects include frequent incursions on personal privacy, the spread of misinformation, and the ‘attention economy,’ all of which have fundamentally changed how we relate to one another, and destabilized civic engagement and labor across industries. Source
Web3, Token Economy [2020s to present]
Decentralized apps (usually running on the blockchain).
- Anyone on the network can use the service (no one can block/deny you access to the service)
- Payments are built in (ether or ETH)
- Turing complete
- Require no personal data
- High reliability: runs on decentralized network rather than a single backend
- Scalability/Speed: change to state need to be processed and propagated
- UX: lots of information, not a lot of good ways to interface with it
- Fracturability: can happen when there are disagreements about protocol changes
- Cost: gas fees
Verifiability is the atom of web3. It is what the hyperlink was for Web1.
Not just providing funding, 4 main value adds
- Earn → get paid to do maintenance work and upkeep of public goods!
- Learn → mentorship from industry leaders and peers
- Connect → creating a community of builders and support network
- Fund → making it easy for developers to support each other
See also: marketplaces