Over the next few years, the world of software development will change massively. App users express frustration about privacy violations and insecurity over their data. Meanwhile, several industries are held back by method inefficiencies resulting from centralizing power, money, and control.
Bitcoin slowed down in 2009, and in the ten years since, the start of a new internet has been forming: the internet of value. We can now buy, sell, loan, and transact money over the internet with no bank or middle man.
The digital storage and transfer of value has channeled up new economic models that were impossible before, such as Theta Network, which pays its watchers to share their video bandwidth, building high efficiency, decentralized video streaming platforms. Presently, Theta is rewarding watchers with a cryptocurrency known as #FUEL, which can be used to donate earnings to streamers or purchase items. Eventually, TFUEL or cryptocurrencies like it can be good to use to purchase in-game stuff: already a multi-billion-dollar industry.
Smart Contracts – Substituting Middle Man
A smart contract is a program that runs on a decentralized architecture (such as a blockchain like Ethereum), which has the capability of locking, unlocking, issuing, and transferring digital properties. For example, it's feasible to publish your cryptocurrency on top of networks like Ethereum. When you do, an intelligent contract commands those tokens, defining how many there are, how new supply is issued or limited, and how transfers of tokens are controlled.
You can also make a smart contract that represents partial ownership in a building or a smart contract that means guarantees to provide computing services, such as data storage, bandwidth, or CPU power. The latter can be used to produce economic commissions to provide decentralized versions of AWS, Google Cloud Platform, or Microsoft Azure. For example, Storj.io and iExec.
Smart contracts have started to substitute the middleman. For instance, if you have some ETH (Ethereum's native cryptocurrency), you can borrow money today and keep your ETH in the market. At the same time, you use the loaned amount for any of your expenses or solve temporary cash flow issues.
Building Crypto Apps (DApps)
"Crypto" is a short-form for "cryptography," but it has become the short way of saying "the industry associated with blockchain, cryptocurrencies, decentralized applications, and decentralized ledger technologies."
Let's start with Ethereum. However, these days, Ethereum isn't the only sole option. Ethereum is a blockchain designed to host Turing-complete smart contracts efficiently supporting DApps (Decentralized Applications).
I am not recommending thinking of your DApp in terms of Solidity and what you can do with the EVM. Try to imagine what you can do when there are digital properties that can be safely transmitted to other people without a bank or broker. Imagine the most user-friendly process to represent those qualities in your app.
The tricky thing to solve without building a wallet into your application is communicating with wallet APIs. For example, on Ethereum, you'd use the Web3 API to set your wallet transactions that need communication from the user. That has been bad news because it requires users to download the Metamask extension or an Ethereum-capable browser such as the Trust Wallet or Coinbase Wallet. Both Trust Wallet and Coinbase Wallet are just Web3-aware browsers with built-in wallets and transaction approval UIs.
Convincing users to install and use an extension or a whole new browser is hard and nearly close to zero percent of your potential users will do it. It has paralyzed the DApp industry and has critically limited the Web3 userbase.
Lately, some of the most popular DApps (like Sliver. tv) have merged wallets inside the DApp. There is no need for any 3rd party wallet unification in such cases. Your app can work in Chrome. The disadvantage is that it's more centralized: users need to have faith in your DApp — which places more security duties on the DApp developer.
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