It’s no wonder Blockchain technology is all the rage these days, with interest pouring in from institutions and governments. If you’re interested in getting into blockchain development as a career path, this blog is for you! In this guide, we’ll go through each step of starting your career in blockchain development, from understanding the basics to transitioning to the blockchain as a software developer.
We’ll also provide information on the prerequisites you need for this career path, as well as tips on where to find good blockchain education resources. So get ready to start your blockchain career journey!
Understanding the Basics of Blockchain Development
If you’re looking to get into blockchain development, you should know a few things. First, blockchain is a distributed database that allows for secure, transparent, and tamper-proof record-keeping. Second, blockchain development is designing and building decentralized applications (DApps) on top of a blockchain platform.
Blockchain is secured through cryptography, and each transaction is verified by a network of computers rather than a central authority. This decentralized approach offers numerous advantages over traditional systems, which is why many industries and organizations are adopting blockchain. So, to get started with blockchain development, having basic knowledge about consensus mechanisms, cryptography, and programming languages will surely help you along the way.
Cryptography is a technique used to secure information and communications by encoding and decoding data. It is a critical component of blockchain technology, as it is used to secure the data stored on the blockchain from tampering and theft.
Cryptography is important for blockchain because it helps to ensure that only authorized users can access the data on the blockchain and that the data cannot be altered without permission. This makes blockchain an extremely secure platform for storing and sharing data.
Understanding Consensus/Trust Mechanism
A consensus mechanism is a computer science process used to agree on a single data value among distributed processes or systems. A trust mechanism is a consensus mechanism that doesn’t require any central authority. In other words, it’s a system where everyone agrees to trust each other.
In blockchain development, a consensus mechanism is used to ensure that all nodes in the network agree on the state of the blockchain. This is necessary because, in a decentralized network, there is no single point of failure, and no one entity can be trusted to provide accurate information about the state of the blockchain.
Many different consensus mechanisms have been proposed in blockchain networks, but the most commonly used ones are Proof-of-Work (PoW) and Proof-of-Stake (PoS).
Proof-of-Work is the original consensus mechanism used by Bitcoin. It requires miners to solve complex mathematical problems to add new blocks of transactions to the blockchain. The first miner to solve the problem gets to add the block, and they are rewarded with Bitcoin.
This system has the advantage of being very secure, but it also has some drawbacks. For one, it requires a lot of energy to run all those miners, making PoW-based blockchains quite expensive. Additionally, transaction speed can be quite slow because only one miner can add a block at a time.
Proof-of-Stake is a newer consensus mechanism designed to address some of the issues with PoW. In PoS, instead of requiring miners to solve complex problems, anyone can add a new block of transactions to the blockchain, provided they have a certain amount of the cryptocurrency being used as collateral. This system is much more environmentally friendly because it doesn’t require nearly as much energy to run. Additionally, transaction speed is much faster because anyone can add a block.
However, PoS also has some drawbacks. For one, it can be quite difficult to change the rules of a PoS blockchain once it’s up and running because everyone needs to agree on the changes. Additionally, some people believe that PoS is less secure than PoW because people are less incentivized to act honestly since they don’t stand to gain anything by doing so. No matter which consensus mechanism you choose for your blockchain project, it’s important to ensure that it is secure and efficient.
Understanding smart contracts
When it comes to blockchain development, one of the most important things to understand is smart contracts. Smart contracts are digital protocols that facilitate, verify, or enforce the negotiation or performance of a contract. They can create trustless relationships between parties, eliminating the need for third-party intermediaries.
Nick Szabo first proposed smart contracts in 1996 to execute transactions without central coordination. Since then, they have been implemented on various blockchain platforms such as Ethereum and Bitcoin. To get started in blockchain development, you must have a good understanding of smart contracts.
Top Languages You Need To Know For Blockchain Development
The most important part of your journey would be learning a programming language with ample scope for future use and is big enough of a community to assist you if you ever need answers to your queries. Here are some programming languages used specifically by blockchain developers.
- Solidity is statically typed, meaning that all variables must be declared with a type before they can be used. This helps prevent errors and enables the compiler to generate more efficient code.
- One key difference is that Solidity does not have inheritance, meaning contract classes cannot extend other classes. This may seem like a limitation at first. Still, it makes contracts much more secure since there is no way for a contract to inherit malicious code from another contract accidentally.
- Another difference is that Solidity has a built-in unit testing framework called TestRPC, making it easy to write and run unit tests for your contracts. This is essential for developing robust smart contracts since it allows you to catch bugs early in the development process.
Web3.py is a Python package that allows you to interact with the blockchain. It’s a wrapper around the Ethereum JSON RPC API and can be used to deploy contracts, send transactions, call functions, and inspect the blockchain.
Ethereum and web3.py
Transitioning to blockchain developer as a software developer
Assuming you are a software developer, the most obvious career transition would be to become a blockchain developer. Blockchain technology is still in its infancy, and much development work must be done.
As a software developer, you will have the necessary skills to become a blockchain developer. You must be proficient in programming languages such as C++, Java, and Python. In addition, you will need to be familiar with distributed ledger technology and cryptography. It goes without mentioning that the demand for blockchain developers is expected to grow in the coming years as more industries begin to adopt this new technology.
Steps to becoming a Blockchain Developer
One can take many different paths to becoming a blockchain developer. However, a few key steps will help you get started on the right foot.
Learn the basics of blockchain technology
This may seem like an obvious first step, but it’s important to have a strong foundation in the basics before moving on to more advanced concepts. Many resources are available online to help you learn about blockchain technology, including articles, videos, and courses. Once you have a solid understanding of how blockchain works, you can move on to learning about specific development platforms and tools.
Choose a development platform or tool
Numerous blockchain development platforms and tools are available, each with advantages and disadvantages. It’s important to research and choose the platform or tool that best suits your needs and skillset. Some popular options include Ethereum, Hyperledger Fabric, and Corda.
Now that you’ve chosen a development platform or tool, it’s time to start coding! Begin by creating smart contracts or applications using your chosen platform or tool. As you become more comfortable with the development process, you can start working on more complex projects.
Apply for jobs
Once you’ve got enough practice under your belt, it’s time to start applying for jobs. There are many different websites where you can find a web 3 job, for example:
- web3.career (Blockchain specific job board)
- Blockchaindevs.net (Reverse job board to find Blockchain jobs and hire Blockchain developers)
- Cryptocurrencyjobs.co (Blockchain specific job board)
- Remoteok.com/remote-web3-jobs (Largest remote job board)
To become a blockchain developer, one must first acquire the necessary skills. These skills include:
- A deep understanding of distributed ledger technology (DLT) and cryptography
- Strong programming skills in languages such as Java, C++, or Go
- Solidity or another smart contract programming language
- Knowledge of how to set up and configure a blockchain network
- Familiarity with popular blockchain platforms such as Ethereum, Hyperledger Fabric, or Corda
Starting your career in blockchain Development can be a daunting task, but with the help of this guide, you’ll be on your way to success. By understanding the basics, prerequisites, and steps needed to transition into blockchain development, you’ll be well on your way to a career in this exciting field.