Natsune Oki on What is DAPP & how they are different from apps
When we spoke about what Web 3 is, we already covered basic ideas about what different words mean including dApp. In that blog post, let’s talk about what it is in a more detailed manner.
What is dApp?
dApp is a short form for decentralized application. As the word suggests, dApps are not owned by a single company or a person. dApps run on blockchain networks like Ethereum with a code called smart contract that provides logic for the function of the app. On a blockchain network like Ethereum, codes inside of these smart contracts are viewable by anyone ( like open API ), this is not the case for traditional apps where codes belong to their owner company and are normally classified as private information, that any developer builds new services on already existing smart contract that were written by someone else.
Some of the features of dApps include:
Smart contract automation: Smart contracts contain coded protocol that they strictly follow so there is no need for humans to intervene. For example, a developer can tell an NFT exchange dApp that uses a smart contract, to only release an NFT if a buyer pays the seller.
Code is viewable by the public: No one company can be in control of data in a given dApp, or what rules users must follow in the dApp. To make it more easy to understand with traditional apps, Facebook has access to our data and the company can use this data, or TikTok has a community guideline setup according to their standards. With dApps neither of the previous statements are true. Data is owned by users, and rules are not set by one single “hosting” company.
dApps do not have to respond to the government or a single large corporation: If a smart contract is coded to execute a certain action, it executes it regardless of who is in the effect. A smart contract doesn’t choose who lives under its rules. To make this easier to understand, large social media companies may have to ban or censor certain people based on their political views or opinions as a result of political conflicts, with dApps, since there is no one central authority, this would not happen - unless it’s written to do so in the code.
dApps never go to sleep: traditional apps typically need some time for maintenance, or they could also accidentally go down, or the app could be shut down if the government for any reason goes to the company who runs it to tell them to do so. dApps however, never go offline. Since the system doesn’t rely on one single entity, - rather they are run across hundreds of computers all across the world by blockchain miners, it can not be shut down.
How are dApps different from traditional apps?