The Web3 (r)evolution is not only necessary but inevitable
Web3 — The next generation of the internet, is a cultural and technological watershed.
The Web3 revolution is already underway and led by some of the early-adopting innovators who are building and using new technologies to improve upon most of the problems that plagued Web2—user data security, privacy, content monetization, and centralization.
To understand what Web3 is, you need to have a good idea of how blockchain works. To keep it short and to the point—A blockchain is a "decentralized" database shared across a network of computers (nodes) that structures its data into blocks strung together like a chain. And Web3 is essentially the application layer built on top of this blockchain technology. It defines how we interact with the world and each other on decentralized platforms.
In the last year, the utilitarian value of blockchain has increased immensely, and so has the adoption of Web3. Substantial practical use cases for blockchain have come up around financial services, marketplaces, and gaming platforms like Axie Infinity—a play-to-earn game that rewards players with value creation, co-creation, and co-ownership of the platform.
Interesting, right? There are a plethora of such models that Web3 enables:
The ultimate goal of such models is to reinvent the mechanism of how money works online and create an equitable outcome for an equitable future for everyone—one of the primary goals of Web3.
It’s still early days for the Web3 ecosystem, and there are plenty of opportunities for you to contribute to this rapidly developing space. In this article, I’ll introduce you to some of the ways to kickstart your Web3 journey because if you start today, you’d still be early.
Understanding blockchain technology and cryptocurrency fundamentals are crucial before jumping into Web3 resources and innovation opportunities. Many people jump straight into investing and joining communities out of FOMO, but the majority of innovation is happening at ground zero, and that’s where you need to be.
We are in the design stage of Web3 or crypto in general. Knowing the basics like how blockchain works and the math behind cryptocurrencies is a huge advantage when you first get into the space, even if you’re non-technical. It can also help you understand the limitations of crypto and new frontiers.
The best way to learn all you can is to get into spaces where an active discussion already exists. Getting into communities and asking questions is the best way to learn from real-life experiences.
This doesn’t mean online courses and tutorials are useless; you just need to find the best ones and squeeze out every bit of deep knowledge you can. There are many free and paid resources online that take you through the working of blockchain. Here are some in-depth courses and resources to help you make a solid Web3 base.
The next step would be to invest in Web3 and stay invested. The way you do that is by just being present and active on the many projects or sub-sectors it has to offer. With all the pieces surrounding web3, a lot goes into getting familiar with it, including these sub-sectors, each with its own rabbit holes. When you first start diving into this world of decentralized technology, web development, or protocols, you’re bound to ask yourself: Where do I start?
I’ve put together this pyramid to illustrate the different levels of participation in Web3.
To get started with Web3, you first need to understand that there’s an entry barrier. It’s a tad bit high, but it’s not impossible. This barrier is the fact that you need crypto and the knowledge surrounding its working, returns, volatility, and security.
No Crypto = no dApps = no fun.
Investing in crypto can be an exhilarating and profitable experience. But remember that cryptocurrency involves a lot of time, both in active learning and investing. You’re going to have to spend a lot of energy researching and studying the market and currency. It’s a high-risk, high-volatility, and high-reward asset class.
You can either hold your assets and play the long-term game or try trading.
If you believe in the fundamentals of blockchain technology, then jumping into crypto as a long-term investment is the best for you.
Trading works best for people seeking a short-term gain by buying crypto at a low price and selling higher as the price fluctuates throughout the day. However, trading is a practice not many people back or stand by for understandable reasons; one of them being the massive volatility of cryptocurrency. DO NOT trade if you’re just a beginner; chances are you might lose more than you gain.
Once you decide what you’re in for, start buying cryptocurrencies like BTC, ETH, and more directly via exchanges and follow these basic steps:
Once you buy some crypto, it’s time to get yourself a wallet. Crypto wallets technically don’t store your crypto like a regular wallet stores cash. Your crypto lives on the blockchain and can only be accessed by a private key. Your keys prove that you own your holdings and allow you to perform on-chain transactions. You need to choose a safe wallet to keep your keys from being accessed because if they get lost or hacked, you can lose all your assets.
Although I’d suggest doing your own research for everything from exchanges to wallets and other resources, here are a few you should check out.
You can also invest in a good cold wallet, typically a USB drive device that securely stores your private keys. This has advantages over software wallets, like being unaffected by viruses or hacks, significantly improving security. Some of the hardware/cold wallets are Ledger, Trezor, and gnosisSafe.
Once you’ve spent a reasonable amount of time on crypto investing and understand the working of blockchain and the crypto market, you might want to try other ways of investing smartly, not only in digital money but projects and other assets.
Here are some other ways you can invest in crypto:
Smart investors don’t invest in something without knowing what they’re getting into. It’s easier to follow the crowd blindly, but taking time to find projects that align with your values and goals makes investing worthwhile. When you land on a project that matches your core beliefs, you’re setting yourself up for long-term success. That’s because:
If you support the community, it will support you.
You can be an early backer of a project by participating in an ICO. An initial coin offering (ICO) is the launch of a new coin. The launch involves the creation of a new cryptocurrency to raise funding for a project. ICOs are like stock offerings. When an ICO is successful, everyone involved reaps substantial rewards.
You can also participate in an Initial DEX Offering or IDO—a crypto token offering run on a Decentralized Exchange (DEX). You’ll need a crypto wallet like MetaMask and some crypto to subscribe and pay fees If you want to enter an IDO. I’d suggest that you always do your own research and invest via a trusted exchange.
Also, look out for airdrops where crypto projects drop free tokens/assets to early investors and crypto communities to encourage adoption, participation and ensure the project’s success. Frequently interacting users on a new and existing platform are likely to receive an airdrop at some stage.
Disclaimer: Investing in ICOs and IDOs depends on your speculative risk tolerance and financial resources. It is best to be cautious when investing if you are interested, as the crypto market has massive volatility.
Crypto staking is where you put your cryptocurrency to work by locking it up, usually in a staking wallet, to earn rewards or interest. Staking makes the blockchain more secure and efficient. You make the cryptocurrency’s blockchain stronger and more resistant to attacks by staking some of your coins. Coinbase’s Guide What is Staking is a beginner-friendly resource to understand how it works.
Staking is hugely popular for all the right reasons. You can earn a passive income from crypto, and there are many cryptocurrencies to choose from. The current best cryptocurrency options for staking include Tezos (XTZ), Ethereum (ETH), Polkadot (DOT), Fantom (FTM), Avalanche (AVAX), Cardano (ADA), and Polygon (MATIC).
Non-fungible tokens, or NFTs, are essentially crypto-collectibles. NFTs could be games, art, and collectibles whose value comes from the experience they create and the value of the network they are built on. They are a core component of the next-generation web. NFTs have gone mainstream, with personalities like SnoopDogg, Serena Williams, Steve Aoki, and Eminem taking part.
Flipping: People usually buy an NFT, wait for the floor price to go up, and sell it. It is highly rewarding and can be profitable, but it is also very time-consuming. If you want the rewarding experience, you should do the opposite of what mainstream traders do — participate in a project you believe in.
Participating in an NFT project is not just buying, holding, and selling. It requires time and effort to bring more people to the project to benefit from its growth. To get a reward for your effort and dedication, you should be passionate about the collection/project you’re investing in.
Participating in Web3 is time-consuming, increasing the participation cost compared to Web2, which had a high opportunity cost.
Investing in an NFT that you believe in will give you high returns on your time, energy, and money. Sometimes these projects can change your life in unexpected ways. It can be an excellent vehicle for making solid, long-term investments. Example: Early investors in Bored Ape Yacht Club have made a killing! If you had invested in BAYC early last year, you’d be a millionaire by now.
I recently came across this brilliant Twitter thread by Bee-j.eth on NFTs and their types, the NFT market, and what to look for when investing in a project:
Here are some people and channels you should check out for nft, crypto, and in general web3 updates.
There’s a proverb that goes, “The World Is Your Oyster.” A creative medium, the oyster, is a potent symbol of fantasy and possibility and an abundant and prosperous future. The Web3 era is the same fertile environment for artists and creators.
Blockchain has given us a new intellectual property and copyright ideas on the next-generation web and opened potentially fair platforms for creators to reach their audiences. Web3 makes you independent from any central authorities and allows you to create/gift value without intermediaries, as you want. Digital artists, especially those putting out 3D art, are having the time of their lives with NFTs. Art is being appreciated and looked at as an investment like never before.
So, if you’re an artist looking for more than just hearts and likes on your Instagram and Facebook posts, you might want to check out these NFT marketplaces:
Music NFTs are also something to look forward to in 2022. Platforms like sound.xyz are the best thing to happen to musicians, who often find it hard to navigate through the music industry contracts. Mike Shinoda, one of the biggest names in the industry who’s gotten into the game early, recently sold his NFT Mixtape ZIGGURATS. With more musicians jumping in on the web3 train, many indie, underrated artists have followed suit and already made a fortune.
Since we’ve established that there’s a place for everyone in Web3, people with technical or administrative skills are more than welcome to join Decentralized Autonomous Organisations or DAOs. DAOs are self-governing, internet-native communities that incorporate contributors with a shared bank account and a purpose: creating value. If you’re a product manager, content strategist, marketer, graphic designer, programmer, or just someone serious about Web3, DAOs are for you!
Web3 rewards not only skills but curiosity.
To learn more about DAOs, how they work, and the future they promise, you might want to read my article Mapping The DAO Economy.
To look for DAOs that might be on a hunt for someone with your skills, Twitter is an excellent place to start. Many DAO members tweet their job boards for everyone to apply openly. One helpful tool to find and start working with a DAO is Layer3. Layer3 allows you to decide which community you want to contribute to and recommend suitable matches. It also helps you earn crypto for your contribution.
Here’s a great Twitter thread by Langford.dev with all the websites for landing Web3 jobs:
Twitter is brimming with Web3 educators like Gaby Goldberg, who actively contribute to the Web3 space and provide unique opportunities to newcomers. Gaby's Web3 Job Board is a well-compiled list of Web3 jobs, regularly updated by Gaby herself. I’d recommend you bookmark it and also spread the word!
The web has always been a place where individual contributions mattered. The decentralized web will invite the creator economy into a new collective consciousness. Here is where we build new things, paving the path to an equitable future. It's where we take back control without losing the core values that make us human. It is creative, independent, curious, and believes rewarding curiosity pays forward in unexpected ways. So, be proudly curious in the Web3 community!
Web3 is an ecosystem – not a product.
Web3 is a digital fabric for new user experiences and decentralized applications and organizations built on blockchain. When it comes to the future of how we work, play, and communicate, decentralized applications (dApps) are the way forward. As more use cases become mainstream, such as decentralized cloud storage and data management, the more relevant building in Web3 will be. The UI/UX designers, crypto-anarchists, illustrators, or software engineers building these dApps are the architects of the new web built in front of our eyes.
To put your ideas for Web3 to work and develop dApps, here’s a list of educational websites and communities to learn Web3 development:
For an elaborative and categorized resource list, Complete Web3.0 And Solidity Development Roadmap 2022 by Vittorio Rivabella is something you should bookmark.
The Web3 ecosystem is vast: from dApps to decentralized identity to wallets and security tokens. In the sea of tools, it can be difficult to separate useful ones from white noise. Here is a notion doc of all the tools you’d need to get started.
It’s still early days in web3, but it is a fast-growing side of the internet with huge technological and economical advantages, allowing for dispute mediation, prediction markets, and human coordination in general. It will make our current economy look ignorant and will most definitely change the future of work and play. It is time for you to get involved with Web3 and help ensure that the new internet is designed equitably. You do not want to be the kid in college who stayed home while everyone else went to the keg party!
There will be hurdles to overcome, the market will climb and dip, and not everything will go according to plan, but I hope that I’ve shown you the promise and potential of Web3.
so wagmi (we are going to make it).
If you’re an early-stage web3 builder or would like to venture out to the web3 ecosystem, our creative-capital studio spacekayak would be more than happy to assist and come along with you on your web3 journey!
If you’re looking for a more in-depth discussion on Web3, check out these resources:
A special thanks to Cathy Guo, Aditya Mohanty, Suhas Motwani, and Daksh Miglani for their contribution and for making this article possible. Crafted with Anchal Chauhan, and Arundhati Thakur from spacekayak. Support us by minting the NFT. WAGMI