Web 3.0 or Web3 is the next evolutionary stage of the internet which benefits from technologies such as Blockchains, Internet of Things, Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning, and Semantic web to be a smarter, more decentralized version of its current self.
Web 3.0: The future of Internet belongs to all of us!
The emergence of internet has changed our lives forever; for good or worst, depending on how you stand on the whole concept. But the internet itself is going through an evolution phase, transforming into a smarter, more decentralized version of its current self. The term Web 3.0 was first coined by Gavin Wood, the co-founder of one of the most significant decentralized networks in the world – the Ethereum network – to describe this new generation of internet. So let’s dive right into the concept itself and try to understand what all the fuss is about.
The evolution of internet
The first forms of the internet emerged when personal computers or PCs didn’t exist and military agencies, big companies and some universities were among the only benefactors of the internet. It was in the 90s that PCs stormed the market and came with it the first generation of the internet which we call the Web 1.0.
Web 1.0 was basically a digital version of newspaper! Only a few people were producing content and most individuals were on the receiving end of the stream of information. Platforms like YouTube did not exist and search engines like Netscape were at their toddler stage of intelligence.
What is Web 3.0?
Web 3.0 or Web3 is the next transitional form of the internet as we know it today. It is structured upon a few key ideas and technologies that include decentralization and Blockchains, Internet of Things, Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning, and Semantic web. With Web3, the internet experience will be on a more personal level thanks to technologies like smart assistants and AI.
Key ideas behind Web 3.0
Decentralization and Blockchains
Instead of the governance and operation of applications, services and platforms by centralized authorities, everyone can become an active and contributing member in the new era of web. There are already decentralized cryptocurrencies that are dedicated towards specific functions in Web3, such as Theta which is specifically dedicated to streaming and video-sharing services, or Helium which is the blockchain that’s specialized for the concept of IoT or the Internet of Things.
Powered by the blockchain technology and smart contracts, Decentralized Applications or DAPPS are another expected aspect of Web3 that replace the old notion of centralized computer applications.
Internet of Things (IoT)
The idea behinds IoT is that if objects are able to interact with each other, and produce, manifest and share data in real-time, not only they become more efficient in their assigned tasks, but their applications can grow beyond imagination. So for example your smart house can listen to your elderly disabled grandmother’s complain about the pain in her stomach and either make suggestions or even decisions about it if needs be, or share this information with her doctor and receive quick answers that might even save her life by saving precious minutes. IoT might have a lot to thank the blockchain technology for, since some necessary concepts for IoT are already built into the fabric of blockchains, e.g. the hashing protocols that are designed to be safe and light-speed fast can play vital roles when it comes to the storing and sharing sensitive information about objects in your house or car. Web3 is the much more preferred medium for IoT compared to Web2, because Web2 is not adequately equipped to deal with such applications.
Artificial Intelligence (AI)
The sheer volume and complexity of data that will circulate within Web3 requires much smarter computers and computer programs that can process and understand the data they receive, and also learn from it to make adjustments, corrections and optimizations on their future decisions. So for example, smart computers equipped with Artificial Intelligence or AI that can learn from their environment and from the continuous stream of input information, might find correct answers to scientific, industrial, and medical problems much faster than humans or even conventional computers!
As crazy and sci-fi as it may sound, the Web3 aims at understanding and feeling human emotions using AI. According to the father of World Wide Web Berners-Lee, computers are aided by semantic web to analyze data from the web and interpret the meaning and emotions behind human interactions! This way, the web experience becomes way more realistic and profound, and computers have a better time comprehending our needs, ideas and emotions.
Potential downsides of Web 3.0
Decentralization is a double edged sword; it makes information more accessible, but makes it way harder to regulate and monitor. The blockchain technology makes tracking of users almost impossible for central authorities, which is not good news for critical situations like criminal cases and national security attacks. But the AI can provide Web3 regulators with the possibility of detecting and responding to threats with a lot more velocity and accuracy.
The internet has revolutionized our lives, interactions, and even our perception of reality. But internet itself is yet to experience another phase of evolution itself; evolving into a smarter, more decentralized version of itself with a deep comprehension about human emotions, which has been given the name Web 3.0 by Gavin Wood, the co-founder of the Ethereum network. Technologies like the blockchain and cryptocurrencies make it more of a free-for-all experience in which everyone has the chance to participate and enjoy the content, as well as becoming a content creator themselves without the need for relying on big data centers to collect and distribute data and information. However, the decentralized nature of Web 3.0 requires more emphasis on technologies that could limit the extent at which cybercriminals take advantage of this decentralized aspect of Web3.