dApp is the abbreviated term for decentralized application. Just as any developer can build apps for the App Store on Apple’s IOS operating system, developers can (also) build on top of Ethereum’s blockchain infrastructure.
To the end user, a dApp might not look and feel any different than other apps you use today. However, dApps are powered by the blockchain; and this makes them different – and perhaps.. far superior.
Here is what you need to know:
- A dAppʼs frontend code and user interface can be written in any language that can make calls to its backend.
- Its backend code runs on a decentralized peer-to-peer network (like ethereum), and all records of the applicationʼs operation are stored on a blockchain.
- In most cases, the entire code base is Open Source. This means other people can access the code and build on top of it, but no one person “owns” the application… meaning they are free to be used, improved, and built on top of by anyone in the community.
- Finally, the collection of users of the dApps are free to govern themselves. This concept is called “autonomy.”
Running dApps on the blockchain also offers added security benefits. Since the transactions are distributed and encrypted across the Ethereum blockchain, there is no central place for a hacker to breach and gain access.
Ethereum is perhaps the best platform for building dApps. Thanks to its very own language, Solidity, this enables developers to form smart contracts using the Ethereum Virtual Machine.
Using these tools, developers have created Dapps with use cases ranging from prediction markets to resource planning.