May 20, 2021 |James Messi
Web 3.0 refers to the third generation of the internet that will feature machine-based learning and deployment of data at the individual site and user levels. The next evolution of the internet will be marked by more intelligent, decentralized, and private web-based platforms. In this article, we review the evolution of the internet and explain how blockchains and decentralized applications (dApps) will play an integral role in the development of Web 3.0.
The Evolution of the Internet
The internet began to gain in popularity in the early 1990s and has since become ubiquitous in nearly all aspects of our lives. Social media networks connected billions of people and smartphones have seemingly unlimited internet-connected applications. But, before the internet’s constant innovation over the past quarter-century, web-based products were relatively limited in their usefulness.
Web 1.0: The Original Internet
This takes us back to Web 1.0. The first iteration of websites on the internet were built with static HTML webpages that could only display information. Leaving visitors of the website limited to simply reading the information displayed on it. Data, at this point, could not be manipulated by the end-user and internet-connected sites and devices could not interact with each other.
Web 2.0: The Social Web
Enter Web 2.0, known as the participative or social web. Web 2.0 is a term that was coined by Darcy DiNucci in 1999. While the term imitates numbering software versions, it does not refer to any official upgrade, feature release, or product launch. The internet has always been constructed and improved in a somewhat decentralized manner. Web 1.0, 2.0, and 3.0 are subjective terms that merely mark a point where these decentralized and individual efforts significantly moved the needle as it relates to the capabilities of the content and the consumer.
With Web 2.0, the significant capabilities added enabled the end-user to interact directly with websites, applications, and other end-users. Sparking rapid growth in the number of people using the internet and paving the way for the creation of tech titans like Goole, Apple, Amazon, and Facebook.
Blockchains were incorporated into Web 2.0 when Satoshi first unveiled the Bitcoin protocol back in 2009. Since then, blockchain technology has allowed Web 2.0 users to more cheaply and efficiently transfer value across the internet. All without any trusted intermediaries. This technology has been expanded to hundreds of additional applications that include non-fungible tokens, decentralized lending and borrowing, and virtual worlds.
What is Web 3.0
Web 3.0, also referred to as the Semantic Web or Decentralized Web, is the next major iteration of the internet and internet-connected devices. Web 3.0 will leverage artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning, and blockchain technology to achieve a more intelligent, decentralized, and private internet.
On one hand, Web 3.0 will use AI and machine learning to provide a more personalized and relevant experience to the end-user. On the other hand, it will connect applications and websites to an ocean of data that will allow AI to create a more personalized experience.
Web 2.0 applications and websites have both static and user-generated content. While this enables content to be broadcast across the internet, the content is rarely optimized for the specific needs of the end-user.
With Web 3.0, AI can generate dynamic content. Meaning that the content delivered to the end-user would be altered from the original version in a way that better suits the content’s consumer.
For example, imagine that you were tasked with teaching a random audience of people about how blockchains work. An audience member that already knows the basics of blockchain will benefit most from a more advanced explanation that will provide them with a deeper understanding of the technology. At the same time, a completely uninformed audience member will benefit the most from a rudimentary explanation that covers the basics and does not overwhelm. The problem is, you can only give one speech and do not have time to cover the basic, intermediate, and advanced aspects of blockchains.
Web 3.0 solves this problem. From our example, the power of machine learning and AI would take one iteration of our speech about blockchains and instantly generate and deliver different versions of varying complications based on the comprehension of the content’s eventual consumer.
Here, we can begin to see the immense value that can be added through machine learning on Web 3.0. Next, we’ll take a closer look at the role blockchains will play in the future of the internet.
Blockchain Technology and Web 3.0
Blockchains are one of the earliest developments of Web 3.0 which entails greater data distribution across unlimited platforms and applications. And, an infrastructure that is more resistant to censorship and eliminates single points of failure.
We discussed how blockchains made the first bridge from Web 2.0 to 3.0 by giving us decentralized money, collectibles, lending, and more. Blockchain developers seek to create a truly decentralized internet where users do not need to move back and forth from decentralized and centralized platforms.
It’s interesting to think about what our virtual experiences will be like on a truly decentralized web that delivers censorship resistance and a permissionless infrastructure to every type of internet application.
For long-term investors, digital assets that are native to platforms with Web 3.0 capabilities, like Brave Attention Token (BAT), may be attractive. BAT is a decentralized web browsing platform that rewards users for consuming ads and better protects their data while browsing. Click below to get started on Beaxy and gain access to the platforms that are building the internet of tomorrow.