If we look back at human history, there are a lot of discoveries and innovations that changed different aspects of human life. From controlling fire by early humans to inventing writing systems, light bulbs, and steam engines by our late ancestors, each one of them has affected human life. However, none of these inventions has transformed our lives as fast and fundamental as the internet. From its emerging in the early ‘90s, the internet has changed the way we work, communicate, store information, shop, etc., in just a few decades. The internet is so tightly integrated into our lives that sometimes we even forget its presence. But the fact is that many internet-based technologies that we take for granted were not imaginable less than half a century ago. After any other significant innovations, many may believe that there are no progressions left to achieve in that field, yet human creativity always proves them wrong. The internet is no exception; blockchains and DApps are the next innovation in this field. In this article, we will go deeper into DApps definition.
What is DApp?
As we have explained in our previous articles, DApps are decentralized applications that are run on top of blockchains. But what does being decentralized really mean?
Imagine that you use the Telegram Messenger application to communicate with your family and friends. This app is owned and operated by Telegram Messenger LLP company, and all users’ information is stored on this company’s datacenters. So Telegram is a centralized application with a single authority, the owner company. On the contrary, DApps are run on blockchains and work through smart contracts. When an application is developed on blockchains, it cannot be altered nor does it have any authority, thanks to blockchain technology’s nature. To understand this point better, let’s give another example. Imagine your Twitter account; the same as all centralized apps, the respective company is the single authority. This authority can delete your tweets, restrict your account, or even delete it. Now imagine if a developer creates a Twitter-like DApps on a blockchain where any user can publish messages. In this case, once a message is posted, no one can delete that, not even the creators. That’s why we say DApps don’t have a single authority.
However, whether or not applications are centralized depends on the internet system rather than the applications themselves. You need a server and data center for the internet, and you have to comply with these requirements, so you cannot expect applications built on this system to be different or work any differently. It is clear that the centralization of the internet system means that your information is always available to companies and organizations, but this is inevitable in such a system.
In addition to the centralized database, the connection between two or more applications is difficult and takes more time. When using an application, you have an intermediary. When using different apps simultaneously, you have to go through different servers and intermediaries, which is not sufficient in terms of the created loads on the network. So, if we want to overcome these obstacles, we have to move towards decentralized internet systems and, as a consequence, decentralized applications.
Blockchains and Their Relation to DApps
Blockchain is a platform that has the capability of changing our lives even greater than what the internet has done. As mentioned earlier, the blockchain system is decentralized; therefore, data centers and servers are eliminated from this system. As a result, every application that is developed and runs on this platform must adhere to decentralization rules.
In a blockchain, every user can serve the system while he/she is using the blockchain. In other words, users are a part of the server, and each of them does a small percentage of the server’s work. In return, users are awarded prizes or any other things that are available in the blockchain system. In other words, blockchain is similar to the current internet system, except that users can manage and help the development of the system in whatever field they are using it.
So, how is this related to DApps? DApps are applications based on blockchains. They can be developed on different blockchains like Ethereum, TRON, EOS, etc. The smart contracts are the basis of DApps. Creators develop a smart contract to define the capabilities they expect of the DApp. A smart contract is valid as long as its conditions are met and no person or organization can take the DApp or its capabilities from you, not even the creators.