Web3 is a somewhat ambiguous term, which makes it difficult to rigorously evaluate what the ambitions for web3 should be, but the general thesis seems to be that web1 was decentralized, web2 centralized everything into platforms, and that web3 will decentralize everything again. web3 should give us the richness of web2, but decentralized.
The web has evolved a lot over the years, and the applications of it today are almost unrecognizable from its most early days. The evolution of the web is often partitioned into three separate stages: Web 1.0, Web 2.0, and Web 3.0.
What is Web 1.0?
Web 1.0 was the first iteration of the web. Most participants were consumers of content, and the creators were typically developers who build websites that contained information served up mainly in text or image format. Web 1.0 lasted approximately from 1991 to 2004.
Web 1.0 consisted of sites serving static content instead of dynamic HTML. Data and content were served from a static file system rather than a database, and sites didn’t have much interactivity at all.
You can think of Web 1.0 as the read-only web.
What is Web 2.0?
Most of us have primarily experienced the web in its current form, commonly referred to as web2. You can think of web2 as the interactive and social web.
In the web2 world, you don’t have to be a developer to participate in the creation process. Many apps are built in a way that easily allows anyone to be a creator.
If you want to craft a thought and share it with the world, you can. If you want to upload a video and allow millions of people to see it, interact with it, and comment on it, you can do that too.
Web2 is simple, really, and because of its simplicity more and more people around the world are becoming creators.
The web in its current form is really great in many ways, but there are some areas where we can do a lot better.
What is Web 3.0?
There are a few fundamental differences between web2 and web3, but decentralization is at its core.
Web3 enhances the internet as we know it today with a few other added characteristics. web3 is:
- Distributed and robust
- Native built-in payments
In web3, developers don’t usually build and deploy applications that run on a single server or that store their data in a single database (usually hosted on and managed by a single cloud provider).
Here is a nice infographic I came across on the difference between Web 2.0 and Web 3.0
There are six major significant features of the new Web, Web 3.0. We think these will help you to grasp the whole concept better.
In sum, Web 3.0 will bring us a fairer internet by enabling the individual to be a sovereign. True sovereignty implies owning and being able to control who profits from one’s time and information. Web 3.0’s decentralized blockchain protocol will enable individuals to connect to an internet where they can own and be properly compensated for their time and data, eclipsing an exploitative and unjust web, where giant, centralized repositories are the only ones that own and profit from it.
In the world of blockchains, it’s only normal that we would get a newer version of the web system. The process is still on its way and has a lot of improvements we can still hope for a much better digital experience.
Let’s see what the future awaits for us.