Web4 – The Next Wave of Decentralization
Thought Leaders are articles that are contributed by respected members of the fintech & digital assets community. They may or may not necessarily reflect the views held by the Securities.io team.
Decentralized cryptocurrency refers to a digital currency that operates independently of a central bank or authority. Transactions are recorded on a public digital ledger (such as a blockchain) and are verified by a network of users rather than a single centralized institution. This decentralized structure allows for increased transparency, security, and autonomy in financial transactions.
Decentralization and web3
Very often, when we talk about decentralization, the term web3 comes into the picture. Web3, also known as the decentralized web or “Web3.0,” is a vision for the future of the internet in which power and control are distributed among users rather than concentrated in a small group of companies or organizations.
The key element of web3 is decentralization, and it aims to allow users to control their own data and identity, as well as giving them more control over the apps and services they use. It is also thought to have the potential to create new business models and economic opportunities.
The key technology behind web3 is blockchain, which is a decentralized, distributed ledger that allows for secure, transparent, and tamper-proof record-keeping. This technology is used to create decentralized applications (dApps) that can run on a blockchain network rather than on a centralized server. This allows for increased security, transparency, and autonomy in online interactions.
Web3 is also associated with the growing field of cryptocurrency and blockchain-based financial services, which allows for decentralized, peer-to-peer transactions without the need for intermediaries like banks.
While this is doable in theory, we may not be ready for such a bold move. Scott Tripp, a member of Redecentralise.com commented, “there is a need to look at what we mean by decentralization. Is there a need to get rid of the governments and banks to be considered decentralized? I do not think so. We need to take proper steps to get to where we want decentralization to be.”
Jenny Zheng, a Web3 advocate, wrote an article on Hackernoon, “Is Web3 Really Web3?” which got me to think harder. In her article, she said, “Even companies that are built on decentralized protocols may have some centralized elements, such as a team of employees or a board of directors that make decisions on behalf of the company. Is this the right way to run a web3 decentralized entity?”. My next immediate thought was, what is next?
Jack Dorsey, co-founder and former CEO of Twitter, Inc, mentioned in one of his speeches that web3 is not decentralized, and I agree with his comments completely.
Web4 could be next
Web4, also known as the decentralized web refers to a vision for the future of the internet in which power and control is distributed among users, rather than concentrated in a small group of companies or organizations.
In this vision, instead of relying on centralized servers and data storage, web4 would utilize decentralized technologies such as blockchain and peer-to-peer networks to build a more open, transparent, and secure internet. This would enable features such as greater data privacy, censorship resistance, and ownership of digital assets.
The key element of web4 is decentralization, it aims to allow users to control their own data and identity, as well as giving them more control over the apps and services they use. It is also thought to have the potential to create new business models and economic opportunities.
Web4 is also associated with the growing field of AI, which has the potential to complement the decentralized nature of web4 in various ways, such as decentralized AI, Federated Learning, Privacy-Preserving AI, Blockchain-based AI, and AI-driven scalability.
Web4 and artificial intelligence
Here are a few examples of how they could potentially interact:
- Decentralized AI: Web4 aims to decentralize power and control on the internet, and this could be applied to AI as well. Decentralized AI systems would allow for more distributed decision-making and reduce the potential for a single entity to have too much control over AI systems.
- Federated Learning: Web4 aims to make it easier for different technologies and platforms to work together seamlessly. Federated learning is a technique where multiple devices, such as smartphones, work together to train a shared AI model, it could be a good fit for Web4.
- Privacy-Preserving AI: Web4 aims to provide increased security and privacy for users. Privacy-preserving AI is a type of AI that aims to protect users’ data privacy while still allowing for useful AI models to be trained.
- Blockchain-based AI: Web4 is associated with the growing field of cryptocurrency and blockchain-based financial services, which allows for decentralized, peer-to-peer transactions without the need for intermediaries like banks. Blockchain-based AI could enable secure and transparent sharing of data between different parties and organizations, which could enhance the development of AI models.
- AI-driven scalability: Web4 aims to handle more data and users by using blockchain technology and sharding concept, which would allow for more efficient and faster processing of transactions. AI techniques such as deep learning can also be used to optimize the scalability of the network.
These concepts are really new and may not be accepted by the community at large. But I do believe that web4 will take its shape very soon.
“I believe in decentralization. Web4 could be the next big movement.” – Anndy Lian