June 18, 2024

5 Blockchain Applications New Developers Should Learn


5 Blockchain Applications New Developers Should Learn

Blockchain technology moves fast, with new developer tools, dApps (decentralized applications), and even whole networks being launched regularly. 

On top of that, there are constant tech updates among existing blockchain networks, developing narratives in the news media, and regular community feedback on social media.

This can make it overwhelming for prospective blockchain developers to know where to start learning.

For new blockchain developers, some types of dApps are found in nearly all popular blockchain ecosystems and can be a career springboard for future developers once they have mastered the basics. 

This blog will discuss these basic dApp types and why new blockchain developers should grasp their fundamental concepts.

Decentralized exchanges (DEXs)

One of the most basic dApps in any blockchain ecosystem is a decentralized exchange or DEX.

It serves a vital function in a blockchain ecosystem’s DeFi (decentralized finance) sector as it allows users to quickly swap different tokens peer-to-peer without a centralized exchange. 

Usually, a DEX is one of the first dApps to appear when a new blockchain is launched. It aims to provide users with peer-to-peer liquidity and transaction potential for various tokens issued on that blockchain.

Read more: All about decentralized exchanges (DEXs)

A user of a particular blockchain may hold or want to transact tokens issued by that blockchain without going through a centralized exchange, which may not even have the token listed. 

A DEX solves this problem by matching buyers and sellers of these tokens. Some users can swap tokens for stablecoins as well.

This is why understanding DEXs is crucial for new blockchain developers as the smart contracts behind a DEX contain many important and common technical concepts such as:

  • Token transfer: DEXs handle the transfers of tokens. This means that their smart contract can teach how to implement this. 
  • Oracle calls: In many cases (although not always), a DEX makes a call to an oracle to update its price. 
  • Pool rebalancing: Another important aspect of a DEX is when tokens are removed, the ratio of the assets has to be recalculated. This is another important feature of smart contracts. 
NFT minting platforms

Another important dApp for new developers is an NFT or tokenization platform.

This dApp allows other users to easily mint an NFT without having to have technical coding skills.

Usually, users have to simply upload an image or some other content-related file of the asset, and the platform will automatically mint NFTs of the uploaded asset on demand.

Read more: What is NFT minting?

The user is responsible for uploading an image or asset, configuring the NFT metadata with essential related information, and setting the price for the NFT if they wish to sell it. 

The platform must accommodate user inputs in an intuitive and user-friendly way. 

The NFT platform’s smart contract handles functions such as:

  • Asynchronous requests: The NFT is minted according to the user’s specifications. This means the smart contract has to wait for those details to be input by a person before creating the token.
  • Wallet transfers: Once it has created an NFT, the platform must send the token to a different wallet. 
  • Minting fees: The fee to generate an NFT depends a lot on the size of the token metadata. NFT minting dApps handle many different metadata sizes and can provide several examples of minting fees. 
5 Blockchain Applications New Developers Should Learn
Yield farming

Yield farming is another important service along with DEXs in the world of DeFi. 

It is a service where a user proves they have contributed to a DeFi application by doing things like staking the tokens of a DeFi project, providing liquidity, purchasing NFTs, etc.

In return for proving these contributions, they receive a reward. 

Read more: Yield Farming 101

The reward can be a DeFi project’s token, a basket of other digital tokens, rewards in the native cryptocurrency of the underlying blockchain network, or something else. 

It is one of the most common ways for DeFi applications to grow their user base and token liquidity.

A yield farming service can teach potential new developers about DeFi concepts such as:

  • Locking period: The tokens provided as proof have to be locked in the smart contract for a set period. 
  • Rewards calculations: The dApp needs to track when the assets were deposited to calculate the appropriate rewards. 
  • Cancelation of rewards: If the user withdraws the tokens before the locking period, the dApp must either cancel the rewards or diminish them by the appropriate amount.  
Multi-signature (multi-sig) crypto wallet

A multi-sig wallet is a smart contract that requires multiple private keys to authorize transactions. The wallet can receive cryptocurrencies, tokens, NFTs, or other crypto assets from the underlying blockchain. 

It aims to provide more security for a particular crypto wallet by sharing control over the wallet’s funds with several other designated users. 

In Cardano, there is a multi-sig functionality built into the protocol itself. Although generally there are script-based multi-sigs on Cardano via the native protocol, it would be beneficial for a new developer to learn how to interact with multi-sig contracts.

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This type of dApp showcases how the signing infrastructure of a blockchain network is designed. It can also provide examples of how a smart contract can require several inputs before approval is provided. 

This kind of dApp can help new developers gain experience on:

  • Signature requests: A multi-sig must request the signature of several crypto wallets before processing a transaction.
  • Asynchronous signatures: Not every user will be online at the same time. The dApp needs to have a waiting period for all those needing to sign the transaction. If the time runs out, it also must cancel the pending transaction.
Treasury management for DAOs

Gaining more popularity in blockchain these days is DAOs or decentralized autonomous organizations.

DAOs aim to be self-sustaining digital organizations run by their members and utilize decentralized blockchain technology to manage voting rights, record necessary data, manage funds, raise capital, and more.

With more DAOs forming, in many cases, they want to have control over their assets divided among their member community. This means every time there is a need to use resources from a treasury this is done with the approval of the members. 

Read more: How Japan is paving the way for companies to form DAOs

Compared to a multi-sig wallet that only requires the approval or signature of other members designated to have control, a treasury management system for a DAO requires a vote-tracking smart contract. 

In the vote, the community decides whether to approve the use of the DAO’s funds. 

This can show new developers:

  • How an input can be used on another smart contract: The voting mechanism is a separate smart contract from the treasury. The first contract needs to produce an output which later becomes the input of the treasury.
  • How to track the ID of a digital token: In most cases, a community votes using the project’s token. The smart contract needs to track these tokens by their ID and accept the voting results based on said ID. 
  • How to track the balance of the treasury: The community rarely uses all the assets in a treasury. The dApp must track how much was moved and what remains in the treasury. 
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