Web3 developer growth hits an all-time high as ecosystem matures

“Web3” may be one of the biggest rumors of 2022, but the idea of ​​creating a fully decentralized platform to host decentralization programs is the vision of the crypto community. While it is noteworthy that some blockchain companies started developing Web3 applications 4 or 5 years ago, the Web3 space has only recently begun to gain traction.

Web3’s recent growth is highlighted in a new report from Electric Capital, an venture capital firm that has been investing in Web3 since 2018. The “Electric Capital 2021 Developer Report” analyzed data from nearly 500,000 repositories and 160 million codes executed across Web3, finding that more than 34,000 new developers executed code for Web3 projects in 2021, the number of developers. The highest in history, according to documents.

In addition, the report indicates that 65% of active developers and 45% of full-time developers started working on Web3 last year. The document also found that more than 18,000 monthly active developers code for open source projects and Web3 today, primarily created on the Ethereum network.

Web2 developers flood Web3 space

Maria Shen, a partner at Electric Capital, told Cointelegraph that 2021 will be a year of historic growth for Web3 development as it brings together the highest number of monthly active developers ever seen by Crypto. She explained in detail that this number refers only to open source developers:

“While there are a large number of closed source developers working in crypto, Web3 is highly open source. This is a significant difference between how companies operate in Web3 from Web2. In Web2, everyone Everyone is developing privately before the final product is shipped. In Web3, developers are shipping and building in the open.

Despite these differences, Shen notes that a growing number of Web2 developers have been migrating to the Web3 space recently. She believes this is partly because Web3 allows for more flexible access points.

For example, Shen explained that part-time developers can easily come in and create Web3 projects. “In Web2, you work for Google or you do not. There really is no choice in the space. But Web3 allows your passion to get involved. And because of its open nature, Shen explains that there are many types of Web3 spaces for developers, allowing individuals to work full-time, part-time or even on occasion. She said:

“Full-time developers can commit 10 days or more a month to a project, while part-time developers can only work night and weekends. We are seeing Web2 developers come in because Web3 allows it to happen.” .

Another reason Web2 developers have recently been interested in Web3 is primarily acceptance. Shen, for example, noted that the rise of unusable tokens (NFTs) has helped new developers focus on the art of designing and supporting creators. Reflecting this sentiment, Tegan Kline, co-founder of Edge and Node, the developer behind the open source indexing protocol The Graph, told Cointelegraph that developers everywhere are dipping their toes into Web3. Due to the rise of decentralized finance and NFTs. “NFTs have made it easier for traditional companies to get into Web3,” she said.

Kline added that The Graph has seen a 300% year-over-year growth of developers, noting that Edge and Node have recently hired engineers from Google, Amazon Web Services and Airbnb, along with individuals from traditional financial institutions. . “The big departure into Web3 is here and I think we will continue to see more tech companies move into space,” Kline said.

A mature solution to help Web3 creators create

In addition to the more flexible points of entry and acceptance, it is important to point out that the solution is mature, making it easier for developers to create products for the decentralized Web3 ecosystem. .

For example, centralization of data and the inclusion of that in decentralization protocols are important features of Web3.

Heikki Vänttinen, co-founder of blockchain oracle API3, told Cointelegraph that API3 aims to bring offline data sources – such as real-world weather data – to the blockchain network on a scale. “We bring the API economy to the blockchain so that decentralized applications and smart contracts do things based on data and real-world events,” he said. Vänttinen explains that oracle’s “Beacon” feature is constantly updated with data information, each run by a single first-party oracle, making it easier for Web3 projects to build API3 technologies.

Vänttinen added that Beacons eliminate the need for third-party oracles such as Chainlink, for example. “Instead of having third-party entities that exist between smart contracts on the Beacons chain, allow APIs to be linked directly to smart contracts instead of having brokers oraclize offline data sources.” In turn, Vänttinen explained that querying data for Web3 development has become more cost-effective, faster, and better managed.

To put this in perspective, Shawn Douglass, CEO of Amberdata, a digital asset data provider, told Cointelegraph that Amberdata is using API3 Beacons to deliver its APIs on the chain in the form of first-party oracles. “This provides a safer and more economical approach than the alternative solutions that employ brokers,” he noted. .

Regarding how it can help Web3 developers, Douglass said Ameberdata Beacons will be used at ETHDenver’s “Buidlathon” 2022, where more than 3,000 Web3 developers will have the opportunity to create their own API3-based data feeds. . While Douglass commented that he was curious to see what use cases would be built, he explained that the Beacons were not about helping developers build faster. “The solution is more about enabling developers to generate data directly from reputable and reputable data providers without relying on third-party oracle,” he said.

In addition to the data, another challenge facing Web3 creators today is the inclusion of new products in the crypto wallet. Erik Marks, an engineer at MetaMask, the cryptocurrency wallet for the Ethereum blockchain, told Cointelegraph that integration with wallets is often the fastest and sometimes only way to increase the product user base in Web3:

“This is especially true for those who create completely new things – for example, networks and protocols, exotic assets, scaling solutions. ”

To ensure that developers can easily build Web3 applications, Marks explained that MetaMask has released a new feature called “Snaps”. Marks added that Snaps was recently released through MetaMask Flask, a distribution network focused on the company’s developers.

According to Marks Snaps, it is designed to allow developers to extend the functionality of MetaMask when running without the involvement of an organization:

“Developers can add their own functionality and make them available to users themselves. Any wallet developer will tell you that first-class support only for Ethereum and its other 2-layer networks is quite competitive enough to say nothing about the new-born 1-layer network. That. The only way to continue is to invite the Web3 developer community into your own bag and allow someone to expand their capabilities with as little involvement from us as possible. ”

In addition, Jacobc.ethThe head of operations at MetaMask told Cointelegraph that as Snaps matures, acquiring MetaMask to support layer-2 network hardware wallets or new asset types will no longer involve MetaMask queries. “You create a Snap and then tell your users about it,” he said.

Web3 developers will continue to grow over time

As the Web3 ecosystem matures, industry experts believe that the Web3 development space will continue to grow over time. Shen thinks this is the case by looking back at how the crypto space has matured in the past. She mentioned that during the 2017 and 2018 bull run, crypto prices peaked in January 2018, but developers did not begin to flood the gap until about a year later. “If we think this market is like the last market, developers will still come in until 2023.”

Kline added that Web3 is already in its infancy, but she predicts the next six to 12 months will focus on completing the section. “We have reached the limit of what we can do in a middle world. Web3 allows us to scale further. Meanwhile, Shen may have pointed out that many challenges remain for Web3 developers. “In Web2, there are many tools that developers can use to deliver products quickly, but you do not have them in Web3,” she said. Thus, Shen said that building the infrastructure for Web3 will continue to cause problems, noting that even though the space is mature, it still lacks much-needed usability.

Interoperability, for example, is still a key component of Web3, enabling different ecosystems to interact with each other. Maly Ly, co-founder and CEO of Laconic Networks, an upcoming blockchain project for data collection in Web3, told Cointelegraph that different blockchains needed to be able to interact with each other to enable interoperability and scalability. Consumption.

The need for cross-chain communication has led to the proliferation of bridges that require fast and flexible access to verifiable or verifiable blockchain data, Ly said. With this, Lee believes that some solutions will emerge this year to meet these challenges:

“The promise of Web3 is consistent with the network of creators and motivating users who rely on unreliable systems where data availability and authentication are essential.” Will address the challenges of software development and core decentralization approvals.