Where would we be without the internet? Well, for one, you’d be searching for this information in a book! The ability to “Google it” has been a remarkable development of the modern world, although there is no shortage of critics.
But with critics comes development: after all, there’s always more progress to be made. And along this progress timeline is Web3, the latest in the internet’s growth and something that will change anonymity and cybersecurity for the better.
Want to learn more? Read on to get into precisely what Web3 is and why you should care about it in the first place.
The evolution of the Internet
In 1994, Web 1.0 became part of the internet. Think of this era as a massive Wikipedia page, where the content can’t be interacted with. This was a simpler time for the internet, although it was an enormous variable of the information age.
You might have had a blog at best, but it’d be text, likely no images, and definitely no videos.
Fast forward a decade, and Web 2.0 was born. The internet became profoundly more interactive due to developments in web technology. These developments also brought rise to several companies, such as:
But when did Web3 come to be? Well, it came to be primarily as a result of numerous variables, and one of those key factors is this:
As it stands in Web 2.0, the internet doesn’t offer enough privacy.
We can already see this shifting attitude with browsers that prevent personalized advertising, block cookies, and maintain discretion. In addition, they may or may not be embedded with a VPN, which can change your location for additional privacy.
But these are all elaborate solutions. That’s where Web3 comes in. This is the next step in the internet’s evolution.
Web3 is all about decentralization. Instead of an internet operated by particular entities, the aim is to have one that its users run independently (in a way).
How will this happen? Well, thanks to a little thing called blockchain. Blockchain technology creates public ledgers of record that anyone can access.
In case it rings a bell, you should know that this technology is what cryptocurrency is based on. In and of themselves, virtual “currencies” such as Bitcoin were meant to be a decentralized way to exchange value without the need for the central bank or other financial players. And this crypto-money has proven to be quite effective at that!
The rest of Web3 builds on this: the idea is to ensure this same amount of decentralization is applied to absolutely everything else you do online, such as when you browse social media, scroll the web, or watch videos.
Consider it a combination of two previous ideas:
The interactive, user-friendly web driven by corporations as we know it today and the user-centric philosophy that brought on the internet as it stood originally.
It’s a shift in the power dynamic back to the user. Or at least, that’s the intention.
Web3 and the Metaverse
Web3 is going to be the foundation for transactions within the metaverse. Web3 will provide a space to trade digital assets. In the context of the metaverse, this might be:
- Digital properties and land
- Digital art
- Digital clothing
- Digital cars
- Other digital assets
You can see where this is going: these transactions will be done using cryptocurrency. While many had reservations about the inherent value of crypto, it turns out that the creators of Bitcoin and other currencies were ahead of the curve!
The business implications of Web3
Did you know: Walmart already uses blockchain? It’s true!
As you’ve probably determined yourself: you should care about Web3 because it will have a massive implication on the future of the web and what becomes normalized in times to come.
Adapting early, particularly if you’re a business owner, will put you ahead of the competition. As an individual, it’s also a chance to get into the world of cryptocurrencies and NFTs: it’s never too late!
Aside from this, however, how might you imagine Web3 technology being adapted within industries? Well, for one, can you see its utility in finance and banking? Consider the numerous benefits blockchain boasts:
- Enhanced security
- Greater transparency
- Better record keeping
This is to name a few. Blockchain provides an excellent opportunity to improve monitoring and even fraud prevention! And the utility stretches far, all the way to healthcare, insurance, and supply chain management.
Also, if you’re in supply chain management, a lot of digital transformation is still required. There’s still far too much paper-based record-holding. Consider how blockchain can facilitate the transfer of goods while adding accessible goods tracking in real-time.
Challenge our psychological inertia: resist resistance to change
Our attitude toward cryptocurrencies spoke to the very real human tendency: we don’t like change. But, like it or not, Web3 will transform the internet. And with this, it’s our choice whether we accept, adapt, and integrate or fall behind and suffer as a result.
The internet has evolved in stages, from the dull static images of Web 1.0 to the dynamic but intrusive content of Web 2.0 to where we’re going, a lovely integration of Web 2.0’s fantastic feature and the core philosophy of the internet: a user-centric place of discretion.
There is only one question: what’s next?