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Ethereum: The Great Handshake

| Oct. 22, 2021

Ethereum is the world’s most popular digital contract compiler, maintained by many but owned by none. Perhaps one of the most interesting factors behind its popularization is the future it paints — one that transforms our current internet standards for ownership, value creation and, most importantly, privacy.

A transformed future?

Not only can apps be written on top of Ethereum, but it allows any digital thing — a picture, a music file, a video, your mom’s favorite pumpkin pie recipe — to be uniquely owned, traded and stored for value, among many other possibilities that are created daily.

While many have predicted the future of the internet to be layered in bundles and levels of protection, it turns out that, paraphrasing Tim Berners-Lee, making the underlying technologies accessible to everyone supercharges its adoption and usefulness.

Ethereum and the emergence of Web 3.0 paint a shifting picture — an internet not just private, but open and transparent by default.

A brief history

In 2013, Vitalik Buterin conceived the idea of Ethereum, which would be developed and deployed two years later. The platform was built to allow anyone in the world with access to the internet to write permanent applications (known as decentralized apps or dApps) upon it, which anyone else can interact with but cannot change — basically open source software with integrity to the nth degree. The bread and butter of these apps are called smart contracts — a digital contract or intermediary....

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For Academic Citation: Tolbert, Ashley and Tarah Wheeler.“Ethereum: The Great Handshake.” TechCrunch, October 22, 2021.