Unpicking The Hype Around Web 3, What’s The Tech?

The buzzword of the moment in the frothier portions of the technology press is inescapable: “Web 3”. This is a collective word for a new generation of decentralised online applications using blockchain technologies, and it follows on from a similar excitement in the mid-2000s surrounding so-called “Web 2” websites that broke away from the static pages of the early Internet.

It’s very evident reading up on Web 3, that there is a huge quantity of hype involved in talking about this Next Big Thing. If this were April 1st it would be tempting to pen a lengthy piece sending up the coverage, but here in January that just won’t do. Instead it’s time to peer under the hype and attempt to discern what Web 3 really is from a technology standpoint. Sure, a Web 3 application uses blockchain technology, often reported breathlessly as “the Blockchain” as though there were only one, but how? What is the real technology beneath it all?

Where Did All This Web 3 Stuff Come From Anyway?

"This machine is a server. DO NOT POWER IT DOWN!!" Tim Berners-Lee's famous sticker on the front of his NeXTcube, the first web server.
“This machine is a server. DO NOT POWER IT DOWN!!” Tim Berners-Lee’s famous sticker on the front of his NeXTcube, the first web server. Binary Koala CC BY-SA 2.0.

In its earliest days, the web could be found only in academia, from Tim Berners-Lee at CERN, and then from others such as the National Center For Supercomputing Applications at the University of Illinois. In the mid-1990s the vast majority of web sites were served by the NCSA’s HTTPD server software, which served as the basis for the later hugely popular Apache project. Sites from this era were later dubbed Web 1.0, and operated as static HTML pages which could be refreshed only by reloading a page.

The millennium brought us Web 2.0. This is generally taken to refer to a much slicker generation of sites that made use of user-generated content. Behind every such generational shift lies a fresh technology, and if it was the HTTP server for Web 1.0, it was the use of Javascript in the browser to refresh page content on the fly for Web 2.0. This was dubbed AJAX, for Asynchronous Javascript And XML, and though the data transfer is now much more likely to be JSON than XML it remains the way that today’s web sites blur the line between a web page and an app.

From Web servers to crypto miners, a rack of mining rigs in a crypto farm.
From Web servers to crypto miners, a rack of mining rigs in a crypto farm. Marco Krohn, CC BY-SA 4.0.

And so we come to Web 3, and here we have a problem when it comes to understanding the technology of it all. Blockchain technologies lie at at its very root, but there’s precious little to be said about how this happens. We’re told that this will decentralise the holding of data as practiced by traditional monolithic web app providers such as Facebook or Twitter who store everything on their own servers into new Web 3 providers who instead store it through so-called Decentralized Autonomous Organizations on a distributed blockchain. The processing of the blockchain will result in a digital currency, which will provide a monetary incentive for the miners who keep the application running by processing the blockchain, and presumably make a tidy profit for the owners of the DAO.

We Need A Bit More Than “It Uses A Blockchain”.

It’s in that last sentence that we find the problem with Web 3 as it’s portrayed, because while there are doubtless online applications that could use a blockchain for storage, the inclusion of a cryptocurrency sprinkles it with pixie dust and the real story becomes obscured by a cloud of hype from people with a swarm of little Bitcoin symbols buzzing around their vision. Everything becomes a potential vehicle for a Web 3 DAO, even if there’s little information as to what benefits this could confer.

A vintage Kool-aid label
Is a metaphorical glass of this stuff necessary to understand what’s going on? MissouriStateArchives, Public domain.

Of course, while for those who’ve drunk enough Kool-Aid it’s obvious that all currently operating websites should move immediately to a blockchain, it’s difficult to see why it would be of any benefit at all to for example a site like Hackaday.

Digging a little further though, we encounter smart contracts. A smart contract is a piece of code which once enacted is executed only when a defined set of conditions are present. They are built into the fabric of some blockchain implementations, and since Ethereum is a well-known example it’s that blockchain which underpins may Web 3 proposals.

As a very simple example, Alice might sell an item to Bob for 1 CryptoUnit to be paid when the item is delivered, and encode the transasction as a smart contract that forms an entry in a block on the CryptoUnit blockchain. When Bob receives the item he places a fresh entry saying so and specifying the contract in the previous entry, and in mining the block containing the fresh entry the code is executed and the required amount is automatically transferred to Alice.

If your comment is that Alice and Bob’s example is a little staged you would of course be correct, but there are plenty of real-world places in which a transaction currently done online via a privately-held centralised service might be done in this way using a blockchain. Perhaps a crowdfunding site could use a smart contract to trigger payments once a campaign had been funded, for example.

Just Because you Can, Should You?

So we’ve taken a stab at finding where the tech lies in Web 3, and come up with a few pointers. The question then is now not what applications might be placed on a blockchain, but whether indeed they should be. It’s one that will be answered by a host of Web 3 startups, but we’d expect the process not to be without bumps in the road.

Questions of energy consumption in blockchain processing will not prove easy to bypass, nor will those of vulnerability in what will become a whole new arena for attack vectors. Then there’s the interesting prospect that a much-used blockchain will eventually grow to the point at which its sheer unwieldiness brings its own problems when using it to underpin applications.

At the time of writing the Ethereum blockchain size is still measured (just) in hundreds of gigabytes, but what challenges will be faced in processing smart contracts when it inevitably reaches the hundreds of terabytes, or even petabytes? Even then, technical concerns aside, there’s the evergreen question of what it will mean for blockchain-based services when market fluctuations mean that their cryptocurrencies fall to the point of unprofitability for miners?

It’s clear that while the technical underpinnings for Web 3 are definitely real despite the sometimes overwhelming hype, their immediate benefit from the point of view of an end user is not as clear-cut as AJAX was for Web 2.  We don’t want to shoot the idea down in flames, but neither are we quite ready to take a long pull on that Kool-Aid. It will be interesting to be observers over the coming years, and see what the real world makes of services using the technology.

98 thoughts on “Unpicking The Hype Around Web 3, What’s The Tech?

  1. Douglas Adam’s wrote in the 1970s how human civilisation was brought down by putting all our resources into manufacturing shoes……

    50 years later we might consume our remaining resouces, powering server farms, maintaining a gargantuan plethora of Blockchains for sharing videos and pictures of food and cats with each other…..

    1. And it’s not like you actually need to do this for a distributed system. We have all this resource exhaustion because we have proof-of-work. We have the proof of work because it’s one of many ways to run a cryptocurrency and implement its consensus.

      But a) you can do things like proof of stake instead and b) YOU DON’T ACTUALLY NEED THE CURRENCY. DITCH IT.

      It’s there because it allows the scam artists who fill the crypto world to make a buck. People don’t need a reward in imaginary internet points to to interact with social media. The interacting with social media is it’s own reward.

      Just distribute their posts between the clients so that each client stores backup stuff for 2-3 people (on average), and use their identity keys to sign everything. It’s not like P2P systems are a new concept. Torrents and napster happened *in the 90’s.*

      1. “People don’t need a reward in imaginary internet points to to interact with social media.”

        Considering the way people use point systems as well as the “need” to bring back likes on YT I think they DO need the emotional rewards from people agreeing with them.

      2. I have thought for a long time it seems like a logical usage of torrenting technolgy woudl be to make a distributed social media platform, so that it can’t be shut down with a single point of atack (eg: a goverment decides they want to sieze the servers, for some reason), but I guess the major stumbling block is how to monetised it.
        “Web 2.0” is basically just self-refreshing blogs and so you can just insert ads into the stream, but “Web 3.0” doesn’t seem to be anything which can’t be done with the existing 2.0 tech, except the daft ideas of cryptocurrencies and NFT.

        1. In my opinion, NFTs are a good idea as long as the original intention is followed: a digital only creation gets a way to determine an “original” for sale or transfer. It’s what happened when someone said, “I can make a digital copy of a physical thing and sell the digital copy as an original,” that the whole thing became stupid.

      3. > People don’t need a reward in imaginary internet points to to interact with social media.

        I don’t believe there’s much substance to web 3.0, but what you describe isn’t the point of the crypto.

    1. When first moved to my current town it seemed ever other shop was a shoe shop, echoing the wonderful theory above. Some years later they had been replaced by phone shops. Some years later still and those were replaced by vape shops. And bringing us up to date every other shop is now empty and borded up.
      Hmm, I forget what my point was.

    1. Blockchain is fine. It’s the cryptocurrency baggage some take issue with. With that being said where it might benefit the community and HaD is in providing a more palatable way than ads for sustaining websites and news organizations (yay, no more paywalls).

  2. I for one am shooting this idea down because it’s a waste of energy. We’re strapped for renewable energy, so this is all powered by pollution. I don’t care if it’s the best things since sliced bread, I’m not going to waste electricity on pointless computations.

      1. Remember paranoia.com ? That was quite the fun site in the 90’s. Much of it was a collection of links to other useful sites, and it hosted quite a lot of useful tech info. It was also an e-mail, IRC, and usenet server, along with website hosting. Bit of a nostalgia trip to look back on it with the web archive.

        Disney owns it now, just to redirect to the Disney site.

      2. Are we banned from saying “fuck” in these comments? Even in a URL, with a good reason that is on topic? I thought this site was still moderated by humans who understand context… who can see that my post explaining the one above is much ruder than than the original would have been.

    1. That’s caused by “agile development methodology”, and sadly isn’t exclusive to web developers.
      Just look at windows post-7, SaaS programs, anything using the Electron framework (which is a full fat browser that’s been gimped), and mobile apps.

      Basically to them, the adage of “do it right or do it twice” doesn’t exist.

    2. Web1.0 were static pages / forms. A form could be sent to receive back dynamic content from a web app.

      Web2.0 used Javascript to keep all the activity on one page (or a small number) by using asynchronous communication (via javascript) to update page content from the app running on the sever.

      What your complaining about is something different again. Now a lot of sites load a sub part of the app itself into the page and remotely run that sub part of the app in your browser using javascript then, only the updates to the app (database updates) are sent back to the sever. So essentially the app no longer runs on the sever. Instead it is sucking all your computer /browser resources to run on your device.

      There are a number of server side code platforms that make this easy to achieve and so now we have a whole new league of websites competing for the worst web based apps in the world. It’s seems that this act of complete stupidity is conducted mostly by mid size to large companies. Places where the person making the decision (CEO perhaps) thinks the app is snappy on their 128GB 16 CPU core desktop machine with a 37″ screen when most of their client base is using mobile devices.

  3. It’s pretty easy to distill what “web 3.0” is: it’s hype, lies and scams. Hype comes mainly from all the cryptobros who don’t actually understand all the technical details of current technologies and blockchains, and lies and scams from all the people who are looking to make a buck out of the cryptobros.

    1. Yes and most of the general public don’t understand these things.

      For the general public:
      Blockchain means cryptocurrency (Bitcoin) and massive power consumption by mining.

      Blockchain can be used to establish verifiable ownership of anything like namecoin that only deals with namespace.

      Something may support the use of multiple currencies but if it supports any form of cryptocurrency then it’s assumed that the same blockchain is used for power / resource intensive mining (and CO2) when that most often is not the case.

      WEB3.0 is also intending to give users better control of their personal data. That has to be a good thing.

  4. I thought the Web was dead. Everyone wants to have apps for their site.

    “Web 2.0” was a figment of O’Reilly’s imagination. Lots of hype, but really the change he suggested. It had already existed, and of courseinteractivity predated the web. Yes, a lot of community group webpages were static in 1996, but that’s because groups didn’t know the internet. Their webpages were markers, rather than being immediate and intimate.

  5. Well, there are other technologies for decentralization other than Blockchain. I can think of IPFS and ActivityPub off the top of my head. And I sure believe those technologies will also be part of this Web 3 thing.

  6. Please, don’t… Nobody needs blockchain and all this crap. Make simple, static webpages with little CSS and maybe a little JS if needed where ever possible. We only have limited ressources!

    1. Yes indeed with our new multicore processors and our fast ram and our video cards with thousands of mips available and we need every web page to look like craigslist. Who needs to watch video anyways. Yes we need those remote server cycles because we have none to spare on our own machines, it takes all that power just to boot up.

      1. And then came countries where people are more than happy to have a Core2Duo to their name as that’s the only thing they could afford.
        Or people surfing using an older tablet, because they think that just for some cat content surfing they don’t need that 100w idle tower humming away in the background and they don’t want to increase the waste pile by throwing away a good working machine.

        1. Computing power hasn’t been increasing at the rate it did with Moore’s law.

          Some time ago we reached the point where we can’t make transistors and smaller and faster and since then we have been adding more and more cores as an attempt to compensate.

          When I do something complex like a VHDL synthases I find my (decade) old 3.8GHz Core 2 Quad is just as good as this machine Intel(R) Core(TM) i5-6500 CPU @ 3.20GHz 3.20 GHz.

    2. Maybe someone can create a portal or proxy that takes all the crap on one side, and serves a simplified version of a web page to your browser? It would have to run in the cloud of course. But it could save both your personal bandwidth, and your computer’s CPU and cut the memory hogging. Of course it would be better if the original websites were simpler, but that ain’t gonna happen, based on the history of the web.

  7. Give users apps that they have to install, and they complain. Give users apps that they don’t have to install and they still complain. Yes we give users far more CPU cycles than they need but they still think they need a whole server farm to generate their web pages because somehow they don’t have enough juice in their 4 gigahertz machine with 16 gigs of RAM and 64 graphics processors.

    In case it isn’t obvious, the future belongs to people who can harness the bazillions of mips of processor power that resides in millions of user PCs.

  8. Web 3.0 seems like little but hype.

    Personally I wouldn’t find interest in hosting such sites, nor have a site directly relying on “others” to be online. (I already have to trust the ISP and DNS providers to do their stuff correctly, but this at least mostly works…)

    To be fair, self hosting isn’t all that hard and a decentralized solution outside one’s own direct control doesn’t really bring much benefits. And just think of all the junk content that would float about in such a blockchain driven system that everyone partaking would have to host… It just asks to be DDoS-ed by stuffing it full of garbage, and people would unintentionally do that.

    I have though heard some say that “blockchains will make validating sources easier.” As if blockchains were some magic that ensured that whatever arbitrary content one puts into a block is related to the prior blocks. And if one were to make such a system, it would limit the scope of sits able to be hosted on it. For an example, this comment itself is just my fabricated opinions, there is no real sources I can point to. Similar for everyone else’s comments to be fair.

    1. “self hosting isn’t all that hard” yeah that’s what they all say until a car hits the pole outside your house on the day you planned for your product rollout, or the cat chews the network cable or the sink overflows and shorts out the server. They have server farms for a reason and the rent is cheap compared to setting up a reliable server in your house.

      1. This is not a problem with self hosting. It’s a lack of high availability implementation.

        I host a set of a friends san, and he hosts mine.

        If the pole outside goes, I can still access my files from the 5G on my phone.

      2. Depends on what you want to host. If it’s only your personal blog or your clubs website/forum then the Pi on the windowsill next to the router is a viable option. Nobody minds if that is down for one or two days.

      3. Self hosting is a fairly wide term.

        It can be a server in one’s own house.
        Or it can be a server in an office. (Ie a company self hosting its own servers)
        Or multiple servers in multiple offices/homes. (One might cooperate with a friend)
        Or a server in a collocation. (A collocation can be a server rack in the local hacker space to be fair, or an actual data center.)

        It is all self hosted, since it is one’s own hardware running it, and one is maintaining the hardware oneself. Likely also maintaining the software too. (For an example, Google hosts their own servers in their own datacenters, to me they are mostly “self hosted”.)

        Then there is the area between self hosting and using some “3rd party” solution. Like renting a server (VM) in a datacenter isn’t one’s own hardware, but one can still run one’s own software.

        But then one can take yet one more step away from “self hosting” where one doesn’t even maintain the software, but rather just using some design suite to modularly build a site with premade features. (Like Hack a Day is just a WordPress website.)

        One should also view the term from both the perspective of consumers/nerds. But also from the perspective of companies/organizations, they too can self host their servers/software or farm it out for someone else to handle.

        But in the end, self hosting doesn’t mean it is some desktop one has hidden away in the closet at home.

        1. I used to have a server at home.

          Then you have the consumer rate data costs with your internet provider, worrying about a power outage and having to do backups, dynamic DNS and all the other support functions, it wasn’t worth it.

          There is an incredible markup between hosting reseller charges and end customer charges so reseller accounts are surprisingly cheap.

          Just buy a low end reseller account on a shared server, you probably never use half the capacity but it will still cost you less than a retail account.

          I’ve done this for over a decade now.

  9. The only real ideas I’ve seen that hold ANY water all revolve around moving money around: crowdfunding, gambling, stock market, etc.

    However, the only advantage I see over existing methods is “trust.”
    Just as you can “trust” an open source project more than a closed source one, but, that trust hasn’t put Microsoft out of business.

    1. People spend billions and billions of dollars every year on entertainment: video games, movies etc. It’s a massively lucrative market. You can make tons and tons of money with a relatively small strategic investment. Do everything in the browser and you can serve millions of users from a single server dishing out just static files.

      Microsoft has fully embraced open source and have a solid strategy to make a profit on it with their cloud business. They are now making MORE money from open source than they ever made from closed source.

      Tell us more about how you trust npm packages over a paid subscription to a closed source system where the vendor makes the source available to enterprise customers for inspection (the current situation with software that needs trust).

    2. Except that I trust Amazon, ebay, or PayPal more than I trust you – no offence! I have no idea who you are, and that’s my point. Without doing a ton of work to find out if you’re trustworthy, why should I trust you or your code?
      That’s why we use centralised services like these for payments, and I don’t send you payment directly.
      That’s also why open source works great for the relatively few well-maintained projects which have lots of eyeballs on them, but the vast majority of stuff release as open source isn’t particularly trustworthy.

      1. Well, thats fine, and odd. Because all of those services extract a tremendous amount of data from you and fund a system that ravages the planet, while being prone to all sorts of things that all centralized services are prone to inlcuding data leaks and ransomware. Further, the ENTIRE point around blockchain is that you dont have to trust. period. there are no people between the two ends of a transaction. No one holding your money, no one acting as a gate way. Don’t conflate the trustless transaction with a scammy business. It doesnt matter what form of cash you use if you give it to someone untrustworthy. If Amazon starts taking bitcoin, does that somehow make bitcoin trusted when it underwent no change at all at that time? A company being scammy or trusted has nothing to do with the financial system sits upon.

        The entire point is that you don’t have to trust me or anyone for these transactions to happen, nor these services to be supplied (although there is always trust required in the code being written well and audited, but you have that problem with centarlized services also). 99.9% of the problems on blockchain projects are where the services get centralized and custodial (i.e. exchanges), but to use blockchain itself, you don’t need those at all.

        Agree with open source. I like a company behind the open source code, most legitimate blockchain projects fit into this scenario. So, its better (to me) to buy a linux distro than use one without a company behind it. Thats not different in blockchain. It’s like your claim is that there are no scammy projects if the company uses fiat. If you believe that, then I have a bridge to sell you…don’t worry, I’ll sell it to you in in USD.

        1. With Blockchain you are trusting that “mathematicians” are telling you the truth, do you really understand how it all works? Who do you think these people work for? So you are trusting people who have a vested interest in lying to you.

          1. In fact, yes, I do know how it works. And no, it’s not trusting mathemeticians. And are you under the impression that THOUSANDS of people from different countries, different nationalities, different cultures, different religions are “working for somebody”? In fact, it works BECAUSE those who wish to corrupt the system are rejected from the benefits of the system. I think you do not understand the realities of decentralized finance.

      2. Actually, take my comment below with the context that I thought your reply was to my comment (the only thing I thought i asked for notification of) rather than someone else’s. My apologies.

      3. You only trust them because they haven’t targeted you yet, like they have to others.

        Web3 will take over as the Internet fabric is re-woven with blockchains. As the technologies converge, so will the hardware to efficiently crunch them.

        Distributed MMO game servers should be the most adoptable early test area outside of money. That and an uncensorsble social media platform.

    3. “Just as you can “trust” an open source project more than a closed source one, but, that trust hasn’t put Microsoft out of business.”

      Long as one’s name isn’t Marak Squires.

  10. The good old days of dialup networking
    Why would I ever want to send an email
    What is an email any way
    Why would I ever want to go to some website when i can go to my local library
    Buying things online, that seems extremely sketchy, how can i trust the person will send me what i purchase
    What happens if the power goes out, then what
    Between the comments and the main article. This is all i hear.

  11. Wow. I am truly saddened to see, not only an article written by someone who has not understood blockchain or its various uses, including web3, but also a list of 22 commenters who have the same problem. Let’s address a few:

    1) no use for blockchain. Same was 100% true for lasers, doped materials which became transistors, heck people even asked what email was for when it came out en mass. Never mind that one commenter at least DID in fact point out that there are a variety of financial uses for blockchain RIGHT NOW. Value transmission, gambling, loans, investment, charitable donations. This is because financial transactions are relatively instant, have no government imposed limits, and are 100% verifiable with no human permissions in the way of the entire process. It also doesnt this at a small fraction of the enedrgy cost of transmitting and using money through banks (more on that in a second)

    2) energy usage. It’s too bad that this old tripe continues amongst the readers of Hackaday who I would think are smarter than that. EVERYTHING uses too much energy when its not compared against the status quo. There is more energy spent on standby power around the world than the entire bitcoin network. Thats power spent just to make sure a device does nothing at all, and you are complaining about the power bitcoin uses? Further, when compared against the energy and geopolitical costs of using fiat through the global financial system, bitcoin wins every single time. It uses a fraction of the power of all those servers,buildings, airconditioninng, etc etc, not to mention the militaries which are used to bolster the value of the fiat in the first place. Most miners try to lower their energy cost and tend to use overage of power that would otherwise get lost or poorly directed. Further, increased transactions on bitcoin (or other network) doesnt increase the power usaage, unlike fiat (although increased price will atttract more miners and that will increase the power usage until the profits drop off). Sidenote: the bitcoin financial system was built from the groud up, with no subsidies, no taxper money, and is not continually subsidized, unlike the fossil fuel industry and banking system. There will be no bitcoin bailouts. Once you realize Bitcoin is a settlement layer like FedWire except faster and less energy intensive , you can see the light I think.
    https://www.coindesk.com/business/2021/03/05/the-frustrating-maddening-all-consuming-bitcoin-energy-debate/
    https://www.coindesk.com/business/2020/05/19/the-last-word-on-bitcoins-energy-consumption/

    3) Helium. RED. Aside from financial transactions, there are already blockchain based solutions that are WAY better than centralized, corporate services. Right now, you can, use the helium network for all sorts of remote sensing (want to know when your house burst a pipe? or where your dog is? or your bike?) and tracking. You don’t need cell network or pay for those exhorbinant data plans. You can help support the Helium network and get paid for it, by the network. In RED, they have created an green energy certification program based around blockchain and NFTS that guarantee that energy is harvested from renewable sources. You don’t need a government and green certification is the exact same from country to country. We are just now beginning to see the benefits of certain things (NOT everything) when they are decentralized and people who want to benefit from these networks are allowed to. Or do you want corporate control and government monopolies over all your services? That seems like a more insane position than trying to work out how decentralized methods can work for everyone.

    4) Web3. Which brings us to Web3. I can’t claim to know where Web3 will bring us. If it means that I control my data (is it better than Tim Berners-Lee’s Solid project?), and my medical records are stored as NFTs as well as my licensing for anything, then yeah, bring it on. But to poopoo it when it literally is in its fetal stage, is utterly bizzarre coming from a website such as Hackaday. I thought this article would be a dive into Web3, how it works, who is using it. Instead, I got to read an close minded barffest that didnt elucidate anything (hint: you don’t need a DAO for web3, there is no magic, it’s just early)

          1. Complete straw man or is it red herring? Look at the earlier days of centralized banks in the beginning of the 20th century, and note that it is nowhere near the beginning of them, when you had criminals running around the USA robbing banks in each town they went to.

            Or the wild west time when your bank got robbed and there was nothing that anyone would do about it, except maybe take a bounty on that guy later to profit off your loss. You weren’t getting anything back.

            I bet there are countless stories of early banks turning out to be complete frauds just taking money and running. This is a whole new type of money. It has alot of growing pains to go through and a long time of catching up to do.

    1. Yeah we are smarter on energy. Hence we don’t fall for whataboutism fallacies that try to redirect attention from themselves just cause something else isn’t great either. We also know how to apply math to crudely probe at things. So let’s do some quick efficiency math! :D

      Let’s see. BTC’s network is currently hasing at 205 Exahash per second. Crudely only one hash per 10 minutes is utilized, rest are redundant waste. Though for sake of the network lets assume 10k hashes per 10 minutes are needed for sufficient consensus model decentralization to be feasible. Now multiply current hash to per 10 minute…divide the necessary by said amount and efficiency is: 8.12*10^(-20). Or: 0.00000000000000000082%. The rest are redundant.

      Now ofcourse mining ain’t the only story if you are going to talk about energy consumption by the networks. After all what use is their work, without the nodes holding the copies of the chain? Right now that is estimated at nearly 15000 nodes. A portion of them probably on small home-servers, but most of them are full-nodes operated by services that rely on them. exchanges, Wallet hosts and the likes. All running nodes and operating services vital to the blockchain’s success. Each of them having ofcourse: offices, personnel and so on. This is something to keep in mind that even Proof-of-Stake cannot escape

      So yeah. No matter how you try to spin it, the computational efficiency is abysmal and you are dealing with the same things as the banking systems as cryptocurrency ceased being just miners and nodes you could run on your PC with 100gb space for over a decade now. And that is not considering scale which probably wouldn’t be flattering either.

      I guess you are fairly new to the Blockchain game. I used to play it myself quite a bit from 2010 till 2016 as an enthusiast, but i’ve long become aware to the eternal hype machine that keeps promising a decentralised future is just around the corner with potential this and “Gonna be huge” that. Every time a new wave of enthusiasts barge in with starry eyes, only to dissappear quietly when it doesn’t happen…

      1. Also Helium isn’t going to work. It is just a Private LoRaWAN network with a token system. except unlike a private solution like operating your own gateway for local remote sensing (suprisingly affordable) or paying a small static fee to the ISP in charge of telephone infrastructure that has established 99% LoRa coverage across country. I’d have to deal with something with dynamic pricing that may be cheaper on month or twice as expensive the next. For many not worth the hassle and for commercial/industrial use simply out of the question.

        Red. It is just a 3rd party certification program. We have countless of those already and most are debatable in effectiveness as the validation processes are always mixed and subject to human error/bias. Red does nothing to solve these decades old issues. They just slapped a blockchain on it.

        1. Helium already works, so I don’t know what you are talking about. Its a PUBLIC LoRawan network. There are already businesses based on it. And it has barely just started. Then they will approach 5g and competing with monstrosities like verizon and at&t. Yeah, it’s lora, and no one stops you from NOT using Helium. The fundamental nature of helium means that you don’t have to have the gateway, someone else is being paid to have that. So the network is just there for you to use. The rest of your comment is pure conjecture. The pricing vs any other remote sensing solution on the market is way smaller.

          Yeah, its a certification program. Thats what I said. Its irrelevant if we have countrless of those, if there is a new one that is better, with a lower barrier to entry and is inclusive of people instead of gatekeeping an industry away from them. Same quality, but cheaper, more inclusive.

          Methinks you just don’t see that a new system is here that allowed ANYONE to participate in an industry, not just htose with big government contracts and monopolies.

      2. I’ve been in blockchain since 2013. I develop for it. There are hype machines for EVERYTHING. Thats totally irrelevant to the nature of blockchain or web3. Theranos was hype. Lasers were hype. Internet was hype. All until the bad got washed out, and the good got used. I already addressed the energy usage. It’s not a whataboutism fallacy. That is lazy argumentation. Comparing something in a silo to nothing and then concluding “thats bad” is mental self pleasuring .None of your numbers are relevant against the fact that the status quo financial system of the world is worse on energy, transaction speed in every single metric and is supported by mass violence currently of a scale the world has never seen before, although… it has always been supported by violence. Why in the world would you not want change? Why do you like corporate control over your services? Why do you think violence is the right answer for you to get what you want?

      3. Number of blocks solved per guess is a silly measure of efficiency. It doesn’t even take into account the power usage. Do you know how many middlemen your credit card transaction goes through even though they could more efficiently go directly between merchant and the clearing house. Lots of silly people and silly opinions on this story’s comments on both sides.

    2. Please watch Dan of the Folding Ideas channel documentary on NFT and Crypto. https://youtu.be/YQ_xWvX1n9g

      All the problems you list are can not solved by adopting a new technology. They are problems of how humans treat other humans. All the crypto does is manufacturer a convenience scapegoat.

      It’s really exhausting having to deal with the 100th MLM true believer. We all know the technology, we have a good reason to have rejected it. Try listening to us for once.

  12. Yeah we can trust Blockchain just like we trusted RSA and SSL 1.0 and SSL 2.0 and WEP and WPA 1… do I have to go on? These things were all called “uncrackable” by the “experts” who were clearly either ignorant or lying. If you trust anything these people say, well maybe you might be interested in my new miracle cream that cures every disease.

      1. I am 53. Oh and yeah, you listed a bunch of technologies that centralized services used blindly, rarely upgrade and got hacked. 11 years of bitcoin, no hack (due to an immutable ledger, no lost funds, continuous improvement). The problem is that those who live in fear of new things don’t tend to bother to understand the new things. You keep thinking centralized, and thats why you are having trouble with this.

        1. Blockchain’s aren’t immune to foul play. ETC has suffered from the once thought as unimaginable “51% attack” resulting in false transactions. There was also these smaller blockchains which had weaknesses in block generation that let some parties ignore the consensus model and just submit valid blocks right away which let them mine a couple million worth of crypto within hours.

          The idea of blockchain being unhackable has been disproven. Even the decentralized nature is under fire as control over a blockchains development tends to be anything but decentral. With either devs retaining control like with most current coins, or relying on a voting system that gives power to a biassed party like BTC’s miner flagging system. Hell, even the ledger has been proven as mutable via a hardfork as devs have pointed out as a (nuclear) option in case of compromise.

          1. No one said they were. Wait until walmart and the government start usingh private blockchains, they are going to get incessantly attacked.

            51% attack was never unimaginable for all projects. If you have a blockchain projects with 3 nodes, its almost guaranteed. The reason ETC was attacked htis way and ETH was not was due to the vast cost on performing one one ETH (or BTC), and the not so vast cost on ETC.

            I never said blockchain was unhackable, I said bitcoin hasnt been hacked. The smaller a project it, the more likely it can happen. Worse, smart contract on a blokcchain are considered blockchain projects, and this code is usually sloppy to and ripe for attack or rug pulls.

            ” as control over a blockchains development tends to be anything but decentral”
            this isn’t true at all as a rule, but it is true as a consequence. People tend to just accept the upgrades from a trusted source. The alternative is a central body ordering everyone else to do something or not do something. This is the path to extremely vulnerable security and fragility. Its also how most software is written. In most blokcchain projects, Anyone is allowed to create mining/staking nodes. Whether or not the other nodes accept it depends on what you wrote and if they think it will be good for them.

      2. That said, there is an incoming threat to blockchains, quantum computers, and sadly only the most powerful will afford a blockchain breaking one and we wont know when it happens until it happens. Happily, this is a well understood threat and is already being dealt with.

          1. Sooner than what? I didnt mention a time frame, but while thats a cool article with a significant milestone, you can see that each qubit increases the erro rate in an exponential rate, and depneding on how its done you need 512 (2048 by some sources) qubits to break bitcoin. There is time,

  13. Now where did i hear the basic idea again, without that blockchain cowmanure of course… yeah, the Freenet Project had that idea like almost 20 years ago already.
    The solution already exists if we want, just saying. :)

    1. And no one uses it. it has gone nowhere in all that time. If only there were a way to incentivize people who are fundamentally selfish to help support a system in a positive way. Oh… huh… thats what blockchain and all its projects do.

    1. Virtually every one of those things has nothing to do with the utility or foundation of web3 and everything to do with the centralized projects and hype around crypto. Shall I also list the centuries long list of scams around real estate, fake medical “cures”, “free” energy, and actual ponzi schemes that worked perfectly well with the good ol’ US dollar bill? or is Theranos, Madoff and PG&E poisoning enough? Or the miles long list of companies and government agencies that use the US dollar that have been hacked and ransomwared in the last 10 years alone?

Leave a Reply

Please be kind and respectful to help make the comments section excellent. (Comment Policy)

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.