If online content can be stored and distributed by peer-to-peer (P2P) blockchain technology, then the web could very quickly become a very different place.
Blockchain currently occupies a place in tech discourse similar to artificial intelligence, inasmuch as everyone knows it’s new and that it’s a big deal; but no one is really sure of how far it will take us, or in which direction.
Current article pitches in tech newsrooms around the world are laced with moments where a writer mentions something to do with blockchain or AI and an editor has already given the article the go-ahead before another word need be uttered.
The uses of blockchain currently being touted include P2P distribution of broadband connection, insurance models and voting systems – the situation is absurd to the point where currency, which blockchain was originally developed for, could reasonably be labeled blockchain’s most boring application.
With that said there is one application for blockchain which would result in something truly exciting and scary, in a way that only the internet can really be: Web 3.0.
Web 3.0 is not necessarily, as some originally thought, going to be based around intelligence, where your needs are served by clever algorithms, and information you didn’t realise you wanted is delivered to you without you realising it.
If web 2.0 was the phase of the internet defined by collaboration, folksonomies and social media, web 3.0 will be the phase where the internet isn’t merely used for those ideas, but is fundamentally built out of their underlying concepts. Blockchain is the means by which the internet can go from something where P2P happens, to being something which is, in and of itself, P2P.
How to P2P
The idea of the open internet hasn’t quite become a reality. The idea that anyone can communicate to anyone privately and freely, and that big corporations and individual users are leveled as equals, has not come true. The reason it hasn’t…