DAPP Network’s Data Revolution
Public Databases Are Changing the Way We Consume Services Online. The DAPP Network Can Connect And Scale Them All.
It could have turned out very differently for email.
Built on open protocols older than the web itself, the email is used today by more than half the global population for both business and personal purposes. Products such as Gmail give us a sleek portal to the world of email, intelligently sort out our emails into categories and even complete our sentences.
However, email had a serious spam problem as recently as a decade ago. Not only did spam clog up our inboxes, but it also took up valuable server space. Some spam emails even crossed the border from harmless clutter to malicious phishing attempts.
A concerned industry had to rally together to stop the spam. Their weapon of choice — data.
Data Shared is Innovation Squared
Data is the fuel for the ‘smart’ experiences that fuel our lives. Just as oil and other fossil fuels were the underlying commodities of the industrial age, data is the raw material that powers the economies in the information age.
When it comes to data, the first stage is sourcing it. That is what internet hall-of-famer Paul Vixie and his partner David Rand started doing in 1996 to combat the scourge of spam. Together, they formed the Mail Abuse Prevention System (MAPS) and set out collecting the IP addresses of spammers.
Vixie and Rand then created a list of abusive addresses and thus the first Real-time Blackhole List (RBL) was born. While network operators can choose from many lists to block off access for spammers, public RBLs have a unique advantage over their private counterparts. Storing data publicly unshackles it from isolated silos and allows various players to collaborate and improve spam detection.
The advantages of public data extend beyond spam prevention. As we enter the era of Web 3, the internet is experiencing both an acceleration in data flow and a shift towards decentralization. Public databases form the bedrock of the new generation of the internet, and will power the online services of the future.
In this article, we look at the challenges of decentralizing data and how Web 3 apps can utilize the DAPP Network to source, store and aggregate data. While each one of these functions have notable utility on their own, it is only by combining them together on the DAPP Network that a fully-featured data solution can emerge.
Decentralizing data is integral to the next generation of the web.
Web3 apps can utilize the DAPP Network to source, store and process data with plug-and-play integrations, all on a universal, high-performance platform. (Click to Tweet)
For a birds-eye overview of decentralized data, read the following article.
Decentralizing Data: Strengths, Weaknesses and Opportunities
The challenges of decentralized data begin with sourcing. Blockchains are deterministic by definition. This means that they can only natively support the type of information that is predictable and will lead to the same result anytime you recreate the actions leading up to a point in time. Most data sources are not deterministic — price feeds and weather data, for example, change all the time — which makes it challenging to incorporate into blockchain applications. Trusting any single entity to deliver these results is less than ideal, since the information can be tampered with to the detriment of users.
Known as the ‘Oracle Problem’, the challenge of sourcing credible external data from within blockchains has given rise to an entire sector of oracle providers facilitating on-chain price feeds for dApps. However, oracles are only one piece of the puzzle.
Another essential piece is storage. As we mentioned in an earlier article on decentralized storage, the traditional ‘client-server’ model of data storage seems to be threatened by the evolution of technology and growth of data. Centralizing data in a single host server introduces a single point of failure that could compromise the entire system. Failure to deliver a requested file could result from censorship, the server being offline or a large number of requests incapacitating the server’s ability to supply the requested file. IPFS, the Interplanetary File System, was built to disrupt centralized file storage, spreading data across a distributed network. Yet, in its current state, IPFS lacks a way to incentivize nodes to keep files readily available, making it impossible to guarantee quality service.
Lastly, after the data has been sourced and stored, it must be aggregated into a useful format based on the specific use-case. A financial dApp may require a calculation of a rolling average over the previous 10 days, while an insurance dApp would need to combine a range of variables about each of their customers when calculating their individual premiums. Currently, most of the aggregation takes place on public blockchains, which comes with a set of tradeoffs. On the one hand, public blockchains offer a high degree of decentralization. However, public blockchains tend to congest sproadically, making transactions prohibitively expensive to send and leading to network-wide “freezes.”
Simultaneously Sourcing, Storing and Aggregating Data With the DAPP Network
The DAPP Network is about more than just price feeds. While various providers across the blockchain industry aim to tackle each of the challenges associated with decentralized data, the DAPP Network is the only solution that can overcome all the challenges associated with decentralized data — sourcing, storing, and aggregating — and yield an end-to-end data solution for Web 3 applications.
Choosing the DAPP Network as the data solution for your dApp offers a number of advantages such as:
- Staking-Based Incentive Mechanism: Developers and users stake DAPP Tokens to DAPP Service Providers, who offer oracle, storage and aggregation services on the DAPP Network. Both the Service Level Agreement (SLA) between the parties, and the DSPs subsequent delivery of the service is kept on-chain. Should the service provider fail to match up to the agreed-upon standards, the user can simply unstake their tokens which causes the DSP to miss out on any future inflation.
- Cross-Chain Compatibility: As a universal middleware, the DAPP Network and its services are available on multiple chains allowing developers to scale and grow their user bases wherever the Layer 1 traction emerges or shifts.
- Flexible Use of Services in a Plug-and-Play fashion: The services for sourcing, storing and aggregating data can be integrated together, in whole or in part, based on the specific use-case of the developer.
The #DAPPNetwork is the only solution that can overcome all the challenges associated with decentralized data and yield an end-to-end data solution for Web 3.0 applications.
Oracles, Storage & Processing — all on a gas-reduced, trust-minimized Layer-2-Plus. (Click to Tweet)
The DAPP Network’s Data Stack
Data Sourcing Layer: dApps access external data through the LiquidOracles service. This is provided by the DAPP Services Providers (DSPs), who are responsible for fetching the data, delivering it in a format that can be consumed from within their smart contracts and running the infrastructure to support the data collection. LiquidOracles provides dApps with customizable decentralization, allowing them to choose which DSPs to use and which data sources to query. They can even run their own nodes for additional security. Additionally, dApps can perform SQL-like queries and calculations on the data in a trustless manner, a feature which is not commonly found in oracle solutions.
Data Storage Layer: Once the data is sourced, it can be stored with either vRAM or LiquidStorage, both of which give developers access to abundant resources without compromising on the integrity of the data. Both vRAM and LiquidStorage utilize IPFS behind the scenes to store files across a distributed network of nodes. Unlike the traditional client-server model, where each file lives on a server with a specific IP address and is retrieved by the client requesting that address, local IPFS cluster files are hashed to give a Unique Resource Identifier (URI) which serves as both a pointer to the given file and a proof as to the data’s integrity. The DAPP Network creates a free market-based incentive layer for IPFS, enhancing the reliability and performance of storage nodes.
The DAPP Network’s storage layer operates across multiple chains and can be utilized together with LiquidOracles and LiquidChains, or independently. For example, a smart contract on WAX that is reading data from a Chainlink price feed can make that data instantly available on the EOS mainnet thanks to cross-chain vRAM.
Evolving Into Data Machines
Human beings are the earliest data machines on the planet. Much like our silicon counterparts, we too have evolved our capacity to source, store and aggregate information over time and space. Our faculty of speech allows us to source information from one another, while the invention of the written word gave us a means of storing data for future use. Finally, all that data is aggregated in the supercomputer that is the human brain.
If a single human or computer is capable of carrying out wondrous feats with a single brain, how much more so could the power of data amplify itself through the seamless collaboration of billions.
Comparisons make it simple for us to fit projects into neat mental models, yet they break down when it comes to the DAPP Network. While decentralized data projects can be compared to individual services on the DAPP Network, its strength lies in its universality and the ability to combine various functions together on a single plug-and-play platform.
Head over to our Telegram channel and discover the many ways to blend DAPP Network services together!