The current world is dominated by technology, everything we look for we have it at our fingertips (literally) with access to the Internet on our Smartphone, but in order to take advantage of all these things we have access to, we use small programs that are known as applications or more commonly: Apps.
An application is a small program that runs on any mobile device and allows different functions to be executed: entertainment, communication, work and much more, nowadays there are applications even to help users lose weight or to concentrate when meditating.
Dapps: decentralized applications
The common feature that applications like WhatsApp, Tinder, Facebook and most popular applications have is that they are “centralized”. All of them depend on a central entity that makes decisions regarding what happens to them and their users must accept the terms and conditions of use if they want to continue using them.
The word DApps is an acronym, such as email (electronic mail) which means Decentralized Applications and it is basically open source applications where the community of users is the one who makes the decisions about what happens with them, since they work on the Bitcoin network and are based on intelligent contracts, of which we speak more extensively in the previous article titled What are smart contracts? Where we explain the fact that the intermediary is eliminated, having a direct relationship between both parties involved.
Main characteristics of the DApps
Under this premise, the DApps so that they can be considered as such, must comply with certain basic characteristics that differentiate them from current applications and allow their users to obtain benefits from them and make decisions about what will eventually happen (if payments will be made) or if its operation will be modified). Next we will mention the most important ones so that you can differentiate them from an application and you can understand their advantages to start using them.
To familiarize ourselves a little more with the decentralized model we can consult the previous article entitled decentralized systems and its relation with the Blockchain where we talk extensively about the decentralization issue in which there is no need for a central entity to decide what should be done with The future of the application is that it is consulted with the members of the community and put to vote and then, after a consensus, the changes are applied.
Precisely because it is based on a decentralized model, decisions on the fate of the application. Being developed on a chain, all members of it must approve any change that you want to make on the application. The best example of this is Bitcoin mining: the miners do a series of mathematical operations that allow them to solve a complex problem that will eventually allow a new block to be added to the block chain, but it is not added until it’s it has been approved in consensus by all the members of the community.
They are open source
For an application to be considered as a DApp, its code must be open and available to the entire community, who can make changes to it to make improvements. This is what makes the difference with traditional applications where the access to the application code only has its developers or the owners of the company and only they decide when they do better or when they send updates.
Types of DApps
The DApps are classified into 3 fundamental types: Type I, Type II and Type III and these are identified if they have their own blockchain or depend on the others, that is, they work in a nested way. To give an example, it is as if it were an operating system. Imagine Microsoft and its Windows system, there are programs such as Office (this would be the Type II DApps). In turn, these programs can be installed extensions or download templates, this would be Type III DApps. Below a more specific definition of each type.
A type I DApp is the one that could be considered the main one of all, since it is the one that owns its own chain of blocks. The oldest known is Bitcoin, but Ethereum and some of the other altcoins that have developed their own blockchains such as Litecoin, Dash, Monero and others also fall into this classification.
This type of DApp is characterized by not having a chain of blocks of its own but uses the chain of blocks of a type I DApp. Although they could also generate their own tokens, they most commonly use the chain in which they operate. Two of the most common type II DApps are Omni Layer, which is built on the Bitcoin network and the Raiden Network that is located in the Ethereum block chain.
Just as type II DApps do not have their own block chain, but this depends on Type II to generate their tokens. It’s like the example we put of the Office extensions in an operating system: they could generate their own payment systems, and cryptocurrencies, but always based on a type II DApp.
The most common are known Safe Network that is supported by Omni Layer and has its own cryptocurrency that is the safecoin, which also has its application distributed. Another is the uRaiden or micro Raiden that is based on the Raiden Network and generates unidirectional payments on bidirectional payment networks.
What do you think about this topic? Are there any other functionality of the DApps that we have not mentioned?
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