IT people from around the world have flocked to the former ironworks in Berlin in recent days: to Polkadot-Decoded, towards Event to get carried away by the latest views on the blockchain and a very extraordinary sense of cohesion. Of course BTC-ECHO will be there too.
From the outside, the location looks old, industrial, and cool. But inside the old factory, people who want to revolutionize the Internet and our whole lives gather.
IT people are busy everywhere in co-working areas. Like highly motivated ants, they form small groups and work together on next generation smart contracts, new metaverses, the future of Web 3.0.
What is the mole?
Founded by Gavin Wood in 2017, Polkadot has an ambitious goal: to enable communication between different blockchains. Until now, this has only been possible using tricks that are often associated with high security risks, such as bridges. However, so-called parachains can be used to securely connect different networks through Polkadot. The pervasive trench warfare between blockchains should end this way and usher in an era of cooperation.
When we arrived, we quickly noticed that the community has something very special in common. Polkadotians could capitalize on their technical skills at tech companies like Google, Apple or Amazon. Instead, they are here on stage and share their achievements with the rest of the community. Everyone wants to make the Internet more decentralized and more secure.
A metaverse with meaning?
“The Metaverse sucks if you’re not solving a problem.” Christel Sieling explains this before blasting the audience through the Kusamaverse created by his team in some sort of rocket. Together with her, we plunge into a whole new world on a big screen.
Here a new ecosystem will be created that maps the Polkadot network and at the same time allows virtual participation in bets, parachain auctions, meetings and hackathons.
The birth of the Kusamaverse was the Corona pandemic. Before that, Polkadot regularly hosted the biggest coding events in Europe. In times of social distancing, the Kusamaverse was a way to bring people together to experience together. They could meet virtually and work together. Breakout groups, video calls, and messengers create a virtual co-working space.
And the world can use that long after the pandemic, at least that’s what proponents of the Metaverse think of as a future vision of 21st-century Web 3.0 work. But in Web 3.0 not only work, knowledge is also imparted.
Knowledge in Web 3.0
OriginTrail aims to connect the physical world with the digital world into a single connected reality. It wants to be the first decentralized application in the world for the graphical representation of knowledge. The data must be easy to find, verifiable and therefore usable.
US tech companies like Google and Facebook are already using similar technology. OriginTrail now implements this decentralized technology in Web.3.0 on Polkadot. OriginTrail already enables seamless international trade between international corporations, for example to monitor and protect supply chains in the pharmaceutical sector through blockchain. They also want to use the technology in DeFi and the Metaverse to create easy access to data, such as assets.
But within the Polkadot community, it’s not all hymns of praise for the “brave new decentralized world.” For example, the following speaker expresses criticism of developers within the industry.
Astar Network: Next Generation Smart Contracts with WASM
Hoon Kim of the Astar Network parachute project begins his presentation with a reckoning with the crypto community (in development). For him, the real value of blockchains lies in the quality and ease of use of so-called dApps. This is exactly where there is a lack of innovative power.
Instead of helping each other develop an app, all too often software developers do their own thing. To advance dApp development, his project is based on the use and optimization of WASM-based smart contracts (WASM = WebAssembly, a programming language).
They offer several advantages over classic smart contracts. Above all, they allow interaction between applications on Ethereum and Polkadot. According to Kim, Astar Network acts as a kind of intelligent hub. Combine both types of contract. It already combines the most Ethereum-based assets on its parachain and has the highest total value locked (TVL).
This article was created in collaboration with Stefan Lübeck and Giacomo Maihofer.
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