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Web 1.0 is an informational web. It presents information that allows its audience to read but there’s no interaction involved.
Web 2.0 begins when people are allowed to blog or share their content on social media platforms. It is an interactive web.
Web 3.0 is a vision that our society is working towards.
It is a decentralized web first and foremost. It allows us to take back control and ownership of our own data – the main motivation to make it happen.
The question in current Web 2.0 internet is – when you set up your profile and add content onto your Facebook page, who owns these content? Does Facebook have the right to use your content to earn advertising money? Can they also use our content to do other projects that we are not aware of?
Web 3.0 is here to ensure ownership of our data.
The nature of Web 3.0 will be:
Peer to Peer
This is supposed to happen with blockchain technology (The very tech behind Crypto-currency as well).
In fact, Crypto currency and NFTs are part of the narrative of the decentralized web – Web 3.0.
Now, there is another Web 3.0 narrative, and that’s actually much closer to home. That’s the Semantic Web.
The Semantic Web does not just present data as they are. It includes using AI to understand the meaning of the data present to present better results.
For example, we all know there is an urban word “Karen” to mean women who are entitled and mean.
Semantic web will be able to understand both the urban slang “Karen” as well as a normal name “Karen” and can present to you data as according to which Karen it thinks you want to check on.
BingChat looks very much like how Semantic Web can show up.
Shopify uses AI to understand your music preference instead of offering you a standard list of music to listen to. That’s also something along the line of Semantic Web.
If you do a deep search to understand Web 3.0, you will be quite overwhelmed by the sheer amount of information out there but most will certainly tell you that we are not there yet. There are too many challenges and too many unknowns.
What I know for now is, if Web 3.0 is JUST a Semantic Web without all the blockchain tech and data ownership, then for sure it is just round the corner.
The Metaverse is not Web 3.0, though it can employ Web 3.0 tech in it to enhance the experience.
The metaverse is a 3D world where individuals take on identities of their avatars and interact with each other. They should not be restricted to gaming in their activities. They should be able to shop, learn, play, and socialize in the metaverse environment.
VR tech can be used in the metaverse, eg. Horizon Worlds. AR hardly so for now.
Some examples of metaverses would be Decentraland, Sandbox, Roblox, Minecraft, Horizon Worlds.
Having said all that, I can also imagine us moving towards going into the Metaverse for most of our interactions – therefore making Web 2.0 totally obsolete and moving Web 3.0 into the metaverse completely. Why not?
In that case then yes we can pretty much interchange both terms – Web 3.0 and Metaverse.
But for now let’s keep them clearly separate.
Read up more about Web 3.0.
Some suggested keywords to search:
Semantic Web, Web 3.0, Decentralized Web, NFT, Cryptocurrencies, Bitcoins, Blockchain technology, DAO.