Web 3.0 Data Space
The Web 3.0 Data Space is the ultimate goal of the Post-Platforms Foundation
The first part of it’s name is self-explanatory: Web 3.0 is a natural name for the ecosystem we are building, as it inherits the best from Web 1.0 (convenience of data access control on personal web-servers) and from Web 2.0 (aggregating power of platforms). Our vision of Web 3.0 is also perfectly compatible with the Semantic Web concept and with the Solid project by Tim Berners-Lee.
The second part of the name does require some explanation.
The Data Space became widely known after it was introduced by the European Commission in 2021, and since then many different visions of the Data Space concept were suggested (e.g. International Data Spaces (IDS) or Gaia-X).
The Post-Platforms vision of Data Space is the most revolutionary, but also the most natural.
The Data Space is formed of billions, and at some point in the future, of trillions of independent servers, PODs, for every person, company, or object, where all the data by and about them is stored at source. They all constitute a gigantic decentralized machine-readable Data Space, where every element is always up to date and every data transaction is identified and secure. This new ecosystem of trillions of “data at source” PODs has rather unusual consequences.
In the world of the Web 3.0 Data Space, governments and corporations won’t need databases.
Let's explore the example of John Smith's house.
Today, various pieces of information about the same house are stored in dozens of public and private databases, comprising data silos: the Cadastre, municipalities, fire department, banks, insurance companies, service organizations, water and electricity suppliers, and so on.
Let's assume that the house has its own POD server, and each organization mentioned above continues working with their own centralized databases, but also writes an authorized copy of its data to the house’s POD:
When John calls the Cadastre for some registration purposes, the Cadastre Officer will be surprised that the data on the POD (the new address and the new energy class) is more up-to-date than the data in the original Cadastre database. The same will be true for insurance, mortgage, police, etc. databases.
At first, the Cadastre considered its database the Original, the records on the PODs being Copies. But soon it becomes obvious that the Cadastre record at the POD is the Original, and their own database of the Cadastre is a Copy. This represents the essence of the Web 3.0 Data Space: the Original Data is stored in a natural way at PODs where it belongs, while government and corporate databases become outdated Copies, which could be used only for cache purposes.
Therefore there is no reason for Governments to keep own centralized databases in the world of Web 3.0 Data Space, as the decentralized pool of PODs will always have the most recent data. Actually, it concerns corporations as well. Databases (as we used to understand them) will disappear everywhere.
But worry not: the authorities will stay in full control of their key data. They will keep their data at our end (at the very place where changes happen), working with it as we work with shared documents, and all their records will be signed and controlled by them. It means that our personal POD will store two types of data:
In a certain sense, the Data Space brings us back to the natural non-digital interaction with information. When we are interested in the name of a person and where she works, we turn to her directly, not to the municipality or to the tax authority. And if we are interested in what color the house is and what it is built of, we just come and have a look, instead of calling the Cadastre.
The Web 3.0 Data Space concept leads to the following rather simple structure:
The pool of billions PODs for people, organizations and things represent the Data Space itself. PODs are not interconnected amongst them. They are accessed only by and via platforms (we call them post-platforms).
Post-platforms get controlled access to PODs, read them and write back on them. Specific users who get access to specific data on PODs, and it does not matter which platform they use. These post-platforms are not interconnected amongst them and they do not hold any original data, just cache copies.
Personal PODs keep data created by its owner, but also public and third-party data.
The Web 3.0 Data Space represents a form of Metaverse, in two ways:
Individual PODs keep all the information originated by a person via their online activities, including sent messages, posts, transactions, various files they created, etc. The same storage also keeps track of all messages, comments, and reactions they or their content ever received. Last but not least, organizations and public authorities also record on the POD every piece of information about its owner's identity and legal liabilities, and this data cannot be changed or deleted by anyone but their authors.
Every legal entity also stores all the information related to its business and legal interactions on its POD. Just like individual ones, their PODs become unique focal points for their data. The Web 3.0 Data Space concept also implies that sooner or later, every real estate, vehicle, device, or even many parts of them will have their own separate PODs. All information regarding their history (ownership, origin, modifications, adjustments etc.), their future (resource left, maintenance scheduled), and their interactions with other subjects and objects will become available to their owners, manufacturers, regulators, partners etc.
European Common Data Spaces
The Post-Platforms Foundation is entering the actively developing domain of technologies and approaches of innovation in data sharing.
In Europe in the recent years, institutions, businesses, and legislators have been discussing issues related to the data economy which resulted in the ambitious European Strategy for Data, set to fund the new generation of ecosystems for data sharing -- the Common European Data Spaces, and the Data Act, a set of legislative measures to ensure fairness and competitiveness in the digital environment