Business magazines are total of breathless prose about the upcoming Metaverse and the untold billions—or even trillions—of dollars that this curiosity of engineering science will somehow create. Since we are not sure what this new social/financial/technological construct will look similar, that remains to be seen. For this article, I volition set aside a discussion of the emerging Metaverse and discuss something a bit clearer and more than concrete: the changes to today’s Internet that will create ‘Web 3.0.’
Spider web 1.0 and Web 2.0
In the starting time (1969) was the ARPANET, a research network deputed by the Usa Department of Defense Avant-garde Research Projects Agency (ARPA) designed to let control-and-control communications to survive widespread devastation (such as from a nuclear commutation). Universities and research facilities began using the technologies developed for ARPANET to create noncombatant networks and interconnect these networks to form a ‘network of networks’—an Internet.
In 1990 a estimator scientist named Tim Berners-Lee created iii technologies that combined to construct the ‘World-Wide Spider web’ atop the fledgling Internet:
- HTML, HyperText Markup Linguistic communication, immune formatting of text and images on screens (spider web pages);
- URL, Uniform Resource Locator (the ‘dot something’ (.com, .net…) office of a web address), allows websites to be plant by name even if the servers moved effectually;
- HTTP, HyperText Transfer Protocol, allows linking from webpage to webpage across the Internet.
The concluding technology needed for the WWW to explode, a ‘web browser’ named Netscape Navigator, came out a few years afterwards. Thus began the Web 1.0 era.
Web 1.0 was a set of tools for accessing static content beyond the Net. Think of it as the ‘read-merely web.’
Since the early on 21st
century, websites have go richer and more interactive. Pages adapt to your device and your network, websites are personalized based on your profile, and collaboration and user content are the main uses of today’southward Web 2.0 ‘read/write spider web.’
Today’south Spider web two.0 evolved over the concluding 20-ish years. The world has changed a lot during that time, in good and bad ways–and the Web must evolve to remain helpful in the futurity. Here are some significant trends influencing Web 3.0 design:
Do yous sometimes feel like Google, Meta (Facebook), and a few other mega-firms control the entire Internet? That your security, your content, your interactions are all in their hands? Bet you lot do—then practise I. Web3.0 will be—must be–more decentralized, with less power in the easily of giant firms and more power in YOUR hands (your house’southward hands and your own hands).
Consider how your business firm might monetize its information, buy other information, or sell services to operate a part of the Web iii.0 infrastructure.
xx-something years ago, the Internet felt a lot friendlier and safer. You lot were not beingness phished, spammed, skimmed, attacked with ransomware, and so on every minute of every day. You probably didn’t have 500 accounts with passwords, either (I have 672 apps on my Android telephone and 424 apps on my iPad). We are harangued to keep passwords unique; nosotros must fight with password managers; and behemothic firms (some of the same ones mentioned above) collect, maintain—and sell—troves of personal data about us. But we withal exercise not have a simple, secure way to store all our medical or financial records.
Can your firm securely store, or help manage, some grade of data for customers? What data you now shop/maintain might you lot pay other firms to store/maintain for you lot?
Alas, do not remember your security budget volition turn down as Spider web 3.0 improves security: there will ever be an ‘arms race’ between defenders and attackers, and information technology will cost you. What WILL improve is convenience every bit distributed ledger (AKA ‘blockchain’) security and information storage tools gain traction.
Today’s kludgy countersign managers and circuitous SSO (unmarried sign-on) systems will be augmented, then replaced, by standardized and vetted interfaces among our ‘personal digital wallets’ to identify us and qualify our access to information.
Practiced forecasts vary regarding the number of cyberspace devices continued and in use and in the mix of ‘man-connected devices’ (like me at my keyboard) vs. auto connections (like cars, TVs, thermostats, lightbulbs, and every other device being made today). They agree that the number is vast and that the growth rate is accelerating.
Even more interesting, the number of machines connected to the Internet (Internet of Things—IoT) already dwarfs the number of people on earth. And IoT connections are growing faster than the number of human being device connections. Web 3.0 is designed to calibration massively. For instance, the original Web 1/Spider web 2 addressing scheme (called IPV4) supports 4.2B unique addresses (which has been stretched over the years past clever technology)—its replacement, IPv6, 340 undecillion IP addresses (that’s 3.4 followed past 36 zeros).
Every device connected to the Internet sends and receives information—and in the case of IoT devices, an increasing amount of data. Remember about it: the amount of data that flows to and from the Internet as I type this commodity is a few characters per 2d and falls to nix when I walk to the kitchen to become a cup of coffee. My two thermostats and three outdoor video cameras ship 1000x that much information every second of every mean solar day.
Modern cobweb-optic engineering science allows about limitless bandwidth across the world’s cobweb backbones, and 5G (which comes in many flavors) plus satellite Internet providers like Starlink provide increasingly higher bandwidth (and lower latency) anywhere we or our devices may roam. Web 3.0 lives in the world of always-continued sensors and actuators, which was a pipedream back when Web 2.0 emerged 20 long years ago.
Design everything you build to collect and send information somewhere, to receive information from somewhere, and to take action based on that information if appropriate (perhaps ready a defect or add a new capability). Consider the statement, made by Walter Wriston effectually 1980, that “Data nearly coin is as valuable as money itself” when you pattern products (and program for acquirement streams).
Terminal Thoughts on the Next Internet Generation
Web 3.0 is non a tangible thing that will be delivered as a production. Information technology’due south an evolution and will be delivered equally a series of poorly fitting parts that get smoothed out over time. In the Dispatch Economy, it’southward essential to consider the possible futures and plan for what might happen–or else some upstart will come out of nowhere and steal your best customers. Start thinking about how you lot’ll use Web three.0 today, so you’re set when information technology takes shape!
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