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Web3 Keywords

In this glossary, we've compiled a comprehensive list of terms, acronyms, and key concepts related to Web3. Whether you're puzzled by 'consensus algorithms' or curious about 'smart contracts,' our aim is to demystify the jargon and provide clear explanations to help you navigate the Web3 ecosystem with confidence.

Feel free to use this page as a reference guide, a learning tool, or simply as a resource to stay updated with the ever-evolving language of blockchain. Let's embark on this journey to unlock the potential of Web3 technology together.

  • Account: In the context of blockchain, an account refers to a user's address or identity on the network. It is associated with a wallet and holds cryptocurrency and other assets.

  • Blockchain Explorer: A web-based tool or interface that allows users to explore and view transactions, addresses, and blocks on a blockchain. It provides transparency and visibility into blockchain data.

  • Consensus Mechanism: The protocol or algorithm used by a blockchain network to achieve agreement among nodes on the validity of transactions and the state of the ledger. Common consensus mechanisms include Proof of Work (PoW) and Proof of Stake (PoS).

  • Cryptocurrency: A digital or virtual currency that uses cryptography for security. Bitcoin (BTC) and Ethereum (ETH) are examples of popular cryptocurrencies.

  • DApp (Decentralized Application): An application built on a blockchain platform, such as Ethereum, that operates without a central authority. DApps typically use smart contracts to execute code and interact with the blockchain.

  • Decentralization: The distribution of control and decision-making across a network of nodes, reducing the reliance on central authorities. Decentralization is a core principle of blockchain technology.

  • ERC (Ethereum Request for Comment): A set of standards or proposals used to define and implement various functionalities and features on the Ethereum blockchain. Examples include ERC-20 (fungible tokens) and ERC-721 (non-fungible tokens).

  • EVM (Ethereum Virtual Machine): A decentralized and Turing-complete virtual machine that executes smart contracts on the Ethereum blockchain. It provides a secure and isolated environment for running code on the network.

  • Faucet: A service that provides free cryptocurrency tokens for testing purposes. Faucets are commonly used on testnets to distribute tokens to developers and users for experimentation.

  • Fork: A split in the blockchain's protocol, resulting in two separate chains with different rules and histories. Forks can be soft forks (backward-compatible) or hard forks (not backward-compatible).

  • Gas Limit: The maximum amount of computational work (gas) allowed for a single transaction or smart contract execution. It prevents infinite loops or excessive resource consumption on the blockchain.

  • Gas Price: The amount of cryptocurrency (usually in Ether) a user is willing to pay for each unit of computational work (gas) required to execute a transaction or smart contract on a blockchain.

  • GWEI (Giga-Wei): A unit of measurement for the cost or fee associated with executing transactions or smart contracts on the Ethereum blockchain. It represents 1,000,000,000 Wei.

  • Immutable Ledger: A key feature of blockchain technology where once data is recorded on the blockchain, it cannot be altered or deleted. This immutability ensures data integrity.

  • Immutable Tokens: Tokens or assets created on a blockchain that cannot be altered once they are issued. Immutable tokens are often used for representing digital or physical assets.

  • IPFS (InterPlanetary File System): It is a protocol and network designed to create a more efficient and decentralized way to store and share hypermedia and data on the internet. It was initially developed by Juan Benet and has gained popularity as a distributed file-sharing and storage system.

  • IPFS CIDv1 (Content Identifier Version 1): CIDv1 is the most widely used version of CIDs in IPFS. It consists of a multibase prefix, a multicodec identifier, a multihash, and optional multicodec-specific parameters. This version allows for greater flexibility and extensibility when dealing with different content types and codecs.

  • IPFS CIDv2 (Content Identifier Version 2): CIDv2 is an evolution of CIDv1 and is designed to improve upon some of its limitations. It includes a few additional features, such as support for variable-length CID representations, which can be more efficient when dealing with large CIDs. CIDv2 also addresses some security concerns and introduces stricter serialization rules.

  • Mainnet: The primary blockchain network where real cryptocurrencies are transacted and recorded. It is the live and production-ready blockchain network.

  • Mining: The process of adding new blocks to a blockchain through the solving of complex mathematical puzzles. Miners are rewarded with cryptocurrency for their computational efforts (common in PoW networks).

  • Node: A device or computer participating in a blockchain network. Nodes validate transactions, maintain a copy of the blockchain, and help secure the network.

  • Nonce: A unique number associated with each transaction sent from an Ethereum address. It prevents double-spending by ensuring that transactions are processed in the correct order.

  • Oracles: External data sources or services that provide real-world information to smart contracts. Oracles are used to trigger actions on the blockchain based on external events.

  • Public vs. Private Blockchain: Public blockchains are open to anyone and are permissionless, while private blockchains restrict access to a selected group of participants and are often used for enterprise or consortium applications.

  • Sender: The entity or user initiating a transaction on a blockchain. The sender's address is used to sign and send transactions, and it is associated with their wallet.

  • Smart Contract: Self-executing contracts with the terms of the agreement directly written into code. Smart contracts automatically execute and enforce agreements when predefined conditions are met.

  • Testnet: A separate blockchain network used for testing and development purposes. Testnets allow developers to experiment with smart contracts and transactions without using real cryptocurrency.

  • Tokenomics: The economic system and rules governing the creation, distribution, and management of tokens on a blockchain. Tokenomics can impact the value and utility of tokens.

  • Transaction: A digital record of a transfer or interaction on a blockchain. Transactions can involve the transfer of cryptocurrency, the execution of smart contracts, or other blockchain operations.

  • Validator: In Proof of Stake (PoS) and other consensus mechanisms, validators are responsible for verifying and adding new blocks to the blockchain. They are typically chosen based on the amount of cryptocurrency they hold and are willing to "stake" as collateral.

  • Wallet: A software or hardware application that stores cryptographic keys used to access and manage cryptocurrency assets. Wallets enable users to send, receive, and manage their digital assets securely.

  • WEI (Wei): The smallest unit of cryptocurrency in the Ethereum blockchain. It is named after Wei Dai, a computer scientist known for his contributions to cryptography. 1 Ether is equal to 1,000,000,000,000,000,000 WEI.