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What is a Dapp?

There are 1,282+ Dapps on Ethereum alone

By CBR Staff Writer

What is a DApp?

You may have heard the word “Dapp” a lot recently. As blockchain continues to heat up, you’re likely to start hearing it even more. So what is exactly is it?

To understand Dapps, you need to understand what blockchain is: a distributed ledger of records organized in “blocks” linked together by cryptographic validation.

Blockchain, in short, is a digital storage of consensus truth that is neither stored in a centralized location nor managed by any single entity.

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Alfonso Delgado De Molina, blockchain lead at Emerchain Capital and consultant at Extropy, an Oxford-based blockchain specialist, told Computer Business Review:

“A DApp is a distributed (or decentralised) application that runs its back-end code on a distributed ledger network.”

“This is achieved by storing the code within a smart contract, which can then be linked to a website or mobile phone app to provide a more user-friendly experience.”

He added: “There are a number of general use cases that DApps can empower. For instance, a DApp may allow its users to exchange services or goods on a peer-to-peer basis and benefit from the automation of payments.”

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“Other DApps store users’ data on the blockchain to provide an auditable trail of activities. In contrast to traditional applications, DApps can be designed to be censorship-resistant and prevent a single point of failure or attack.”

So, how many Dapps are out there?

State of the Dapps, a not-for-profit curated directory of Decentralized Applications on the popular Ethereum blockchain, lists 1,282.

Numerous others exist on emerging blockchains, like Singapore’s XinFin.

Recent additions to State of the Dapps include “Next Craft Beer“, a layer built on top of the Ethereum blockchain that will allow craft beer breweries to track their products’ progress from farm to bottle, “Initial Bounty Offering”, an app to crowdsource human reserces, development and marketing”, “Sapien” a democratised social news platform to reward content creators, using the SPN token, “Nethereum”, an open-source .NET integration library and many more.

Tinder for Horses?

The inspiration for State of the ÐApps came from FreshMeat, now known as FreeCode which was a site reference for Linux users, which had a big inventory of the open source applications, games and all sources for Linux, the sites founders say.

Like an app “ecosystem”, there is a healthy mix of good, bad and ugly on the site: “In State of the ÐApps there are many projects covering different fields such as health, Ponzi schemes, games, virtual reality, artificial intelligence, education, registries, job markets, tinder for horses and many more,” they said.

The entire project is open-source and available on github.

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