What is NFT
NFT (non-fungible tokens or non-fungible token) is a technology that secures the ownership of a digital object to one user and confirms the uniqueness of the digital property. The concept comes from the world of cryptocurrencies and works on the blockchain: a technology that records data in digital blocks in a particular order. Blockchain information cannot be deleted or changed. Blocks are stored on different devices worldwide, not on the same server. Hacking a digital object on the blockchain is almost impossible.
A token is an element of a blockchain or a digital record that can be compared to securities or stocks in the real world. There are replaceable tokens, partially fungible and non-fungible (NFT token).
The technology appeared in 2017 and was based on the smart contracts of the Ethereum cryptocurrency. Smart contracts are written codes of agreements and a way to use an object. In the real world, the contract is secured with a signature; in the digital world, this function is performed by a token.
Initially, NFT technology supported blockchain art: it protected the copyright of unique content. Determining the authorship of a picture in the digital world is complex. The image with the cat in JPG format does not differ from the copy. When copying, uniqueness is lost, and the author remains unknown if users do not indicate his name under each publication. When an image receives an NFT token, the copy history is saved, and each user knows the author and owner precisely.
The first transition of a real work of art to digital became a performance. Banksy’s Morons (White) stencil from 2007 was purchased by Injective Protocol for $95,000. The result was burned, and only a virtual version was left in the form of an NFT token.
Now tokens are received not only by NFT paintings but also by copyright images, gifs, music, photos and videos, and game items. Even objects of the natural world: cars and real estate. Perhaps there will be no need to process paper documents in the future because NTF will even replace passports.
How to create, sell and buy NFTs
How to buy NFTs
First, you need to choose one of the sites. NFT platforms trade digital objects in cryptocurrencies, sometimes in dollars. Example sites: Juggerworld, Treasureland, Blockparty, Nfty Gateway, Rarible, OpenSea, NFT STARS, NFT-X, and others.
The buyer receives a digital certificate with unique blockchain data and stores the object on any device: in smartphones, computer memory, or flash drive. The object remains in IPFS (Inter-Planetary File System) – perpetual storage. Other users can download and view the thing, but the private key (certificate) remains with only one user. When copying, the owner can issue public keys to other users to confirm the object’s authenticity.
How to create an NFT token and sell it
The same platforms are used to create and sell. The user needs a crypto wallet to pay the platform commission (not always) and the object itself. The owner uploads content to the platform and sets a price.
NFT is created in one of the blockchain formats: ERC-721, ERC-1155, ERC-998, EIP-2309, and others that NFT platforms offer.
The NFT author has the right to:
- Limit the number of copies.
- Receive royalties from each sale (sometimes, this happens automatically).
- Do not prove copyright, which is registered in the blockchain.
Why are NFTs needed?
Content creators earn
Usually, authors promote the platforms where they publish their content. In return, they get advertising and virality but not money directly. With NFT, royalties from using his content are available to the author.
Before the NFT, objects had to be signed to retain the author’s name. The method worked poorly, and the author’s name was often lost. The blockchain records the creator of the object, the current owner, and the history of resales.
Replacement of digital documents and tickets
With NFT, real estate or car ownership is confirmed by a token instead of a paper document. The technology is also used to sell tickets for events. The difference with conventional e-tickets and documents in terms of security: NFTs cannot be counterfeited or stolen.
NFT adds interactivity to media content and includes the user in its creation.
Buying digital objects is a profitable investment. NFTs are getting more expensive, and digital objects are being resold for impressive amounts, but it is impossible to say which NFT will skyrocket in price. Not all NFTs are valuable: it depends on the author and characteristics.
NFTs are revolutionizing the music industry by giving musicians opportunities they never imagined before. In current realities, most of the musician’s profits go to the manager, label, and distribution company. The amount of money going to the musician himself is, by comparison, very small. NFTs turn this model on its head by offering almost instant payouts with much more money transferred to the artist.
Musicians can use decentralized distribution platforms that pay money in real time when their music is listened to. It so happened that distribution companies charge substantial money for their work, and payments to musicians occur once or twice a year. NFTs, bring musicians and their fans closer than ever before. Songs, music videos, photos, GIFs, merchandise, and experiences will be provided to fans as NFTs.
Projects like Opulous are supporting musicians in new ways using intelligent contracts and NFTs. Artists can take out a loan to develop their music and repay it with the profits from releasing songs. With NFT, musicians have new opportunities to earn the money they need to launch a project or release new songs.
Various kinds of musical NFTs
There are several varieties of NFTs in the music space. Let’s find out how they influenced the industry we are used to.
Full songs and albums
Have you ever dreamed of getting your hands on the first recording of your favorite song or album? Now it’s possible! More and more artists and musicians are using NFT to release exclusive recordings to be closer to their audience.
Recently, acclaimed R&B artist and award winner Trey Songz launched an exclusive NFT Mystery Box on Binance NFT that includes new unreleased songs and unique tracks created by the author. Another NFT set from this collection features the latest songs, the opportunity to talk to Trey via video call, and even participate in recording a track for his album.
Digital artwork and photography
Works of art of various kinds play a significant role in the creation of performers and, to a certain extent, influence their income. Digital images include limited edition album covers, posters, and exclusive backstage photos from concerts.
For example, the Melos X David Bowie series on Binance NFT includes unreleased audio and photographs of David Bowie and behind-the-scenes stories.
The growing popularity of non-fungible tokens is creating more ways to use this technology in the real world, such as exclusive perks, luxuries, and even concert tickets. The advantage of an NFT ticket is that you are protected from scammers and will never lose it!
Videos of favorite performances
Like NBA Top Shot NFT video clips, you can now forever capture the moment of your special concert by purchasing it as an NFT and even playing it at home in the future.
Again, there are many different approaches and benefits that NFTs can offer the art industry. It can be said that NFTs are best known as digital images with unique owners. The volume of transactions with NFT art, at the moment, bypasses any other NFT resources.
NFT images vary; some cost 0.001 ETH, others 100+ ETH! The cost of NFT images is subjective and can be anything, depending on the buyer. Images with trendy designs, captivating GIFs, or simply interesting stories from an artist or famous brand are more likely to sell for more money than regular images.
Some NFT images can offer unique experiences as artists can interact with the data streams to enhance designs. For example, an enthusiast can program a digital photo of the Mona Lisa to smile when the price of ETH goes up and frown when it goes down.
Bringing NFT into the art industry will help traditional artists as well. Physical paintings will be able to receive a unique NFT “tag” (such as a QR code) that will allow them to track their owners. The artist himself can set the commission costs for each sale. Making a profit by reselling your work over the years is genuinely revolutionary.
How traditional media platforms are moving to NFTs
From time to time, new technologies or trends emerge that force market participant to either adapt quickly or risk being left behind. This phenomenon has recently become visible in the media industry due to the explosive popularity of non-fungible tokens (NFT) and their ability to change digital content ownership, distribution, and monetization. Since early 2021, several media platforms have been experimenting with new technology. Some have even included it in their plans to fully digitize their products and services.
In March 2021, the financial news website Quartz announced its plans to sell the news article as an NFT through a four-day auction on OpenSea. At the end of the auction, it was sold for 1 Ether (then worth $1,800) to an electronic art collector who goes by the pseudonym “zonted” on the OpenSea marketplace. The article was a handcrafted SVG image. As with most NFT art, the creator—in this case, Quartz—did not transfer the copyright to the report to the buyer.
TIME has been active in the NFT space since technology began circulating on major news websites. Like Quartz, TIME launched its NFT in March 2021. For its first campaign, NFT TIME tokenized the iconic theme “Is God dead?” cover, along with two other bodies with a similar theme, “Really Dead?” and the yet-to-be-published “Fiat Is Dead?” The collection includes tokenized images of all three covers. Notably, TIME sold its collection for nearly $500,000.
New York Times
On March 25, 2021, The New York Times sold an NFT column about the NFT marketplace Foundation for $560,000. What was interesting about this auction was that the tokenized article did not have any historical significance and did not address a specific historical event before the NFT sale. The article was written by Kevin Ruse just a day before the official launch of the NFT and is titled “Buy this blockchain column,” which seems to highlight the generosity of the NFT sector. According to Rose, proceeds from the auction went to the Neediest Cases Fund, a charity run by The New York Times.
Another notable case is the CNN Vault project, which allows people to buy NFTs that historical display moments and exclusive stories from the last 40 years of operation. The tokens are minted and available for purchase on the CNN website. Buyers can showcase their collections on their CNN pages and earn rewards and other insider benefits by collecting tokens for related topics.
Gaming industry in the field of NFT and Play-to-Win Games
Games have always been created in isolated companies controlled by centralized entities. Developers or publishers dictate the system’s rules and usually have strict terms regarding in-game currency.
Players are generally prohibited from selling their in-game items or assets for fiat currency. Often they had to resort to the illegal use of third-party platforms and rely on insecure peer-to-peer (P2P) transactions. As a result, digital assets are ultimately owned and controlled by developers. But many players value their virtual property.
Play-to-Win games allow players to generate a steady stream of cryptocurrency simply by playing the game. The mechanics of each round may differ, but rewards usually come from staking, farming the game’s currency, or generating tradable NFT items. In older blockchain games, users mainly relied on random chances to win. However, Play to Win has created in-game economies and business models where players can work for income.
Axie Infinity on the Ethereum blockchain is one famous example. The game combines traditional video game elements and gameplay with the old blockchain game model. For instance, Axie Infinity features an adventure mode, PvP battles, and tournaments – which are commonly found in the traditional gaming industry. The game is available for Windows, Android, Mac OS, and iOS.
With its mix of gaming and finance, play-to-win games fall under the GameFi category. Each game provides financial incentives to play and progress. As mentioned, there is usually a deepening aspect of repeating specific actions that allow users to earn income in two main ways:
- Earn in-game cryptocurrencies. An example would be Axie Infinity’s Smooth Love Potion (SLP), acquired by completing daily quests or battling monsters and players.
- Earn or trade NFT while playing. Each NFT can represent an item, character, or another in-game collectible. Depending on the game, they can be purely cosmetic or serve an in-game use or purpose.
- There is a third play-to-win earning alternative: staking. Some NFT games allow users to lock NFTs or cryptocurrencies into intelligent contracts, generating rewards. For example, MBOX token staking rewards users with MOMO NFT mystery boxes. Each one contains a random NFT of various rarities that can then be sold on the secondary market. However, you will need a substantial initial deposit to win big staking rewards.
NFT (non-fungible token) is a blockchain-based technology that confirms the uniqueness of a digital object, protects copyright and keeps a history of changes and resales.
A digital object is uploaded to one of the NFT platforms, and the price is indicated in cryptocurrency (sometimes in dollars). Technology sells art, pictures, music, gifs, and game items. NFT even replaces paper documents when buying real estate or a car.
The technology gives income to content creators who receive royalties. NFTs are also an alternative to traditional investments. Digital objects are rising in value and are often sold at auctions for thousands and millions of dollars.
What is Swift?
Swift is an open source programming language from Apple. They are designed to develop iOS and macOS applications, less commonly used in other projects.
The language appeared only in 2014 as an alternative to Objective-C. At first, Swift was closed, but then Apple opened its source code. The idea was to speed up development, make it more convenient, and clarify the code.
Swift is a compiled language. This means that the program does not run line by line. Before launch, it is ultimately translated into machine codes using special software – a compiler. This makes applications run faster. The compiler for Swift is included in the XCode programming environment for macOS.
The language is high-level, meaning that the code is closer to human concepts than machine codes.
The technology is used to write code that runs smartphones, players, smart watches, computers, and other devices from Apple.
Today, Swift is at the top of the international programming language charts. For example, the July 2021 TIOBE index ranked Swift 16th among the top 20 programming languages. While in the PYPL Prominence Programming Language Index Swift charts at number 10, and a Stack Overflow developer survey mentioned Swift as the nine most favorite development languages.
Obviously, in the next few years, all applications for iOS (and not only) will be created using Swift.
Chris Lattner spent a year and a half creating a new programming language. During this time, he did not talk about his work to anyone, even among close friends. He began working in the summer of 2010, devoting nights and weekends to this cause, and by the end of the following year, he had developed the foundations of the future language. Only then did Chris reveal his secret inside the company, whose top managers were impressed enough to add several experienced engineers to the project. A year and a half later, Lattner’s project was included in the list of the main directions of the company, and the development team expanded significantly. The company where Chris Lattner works is called Apple, and the language he created is called Swift.
On June 2, 2014, at the WWDC presentation, the Swift language was released. The company released a test version for third-party developers and programmers, positioning the language as a faster and more efficient way to create programs for the iPhone, iPad, and Mac. Even four years after Chris Lattner started work on Swift, information about this product shocked everyone but a limited number of Apple employees. Even people indirectly involved in creating the language and helping Chris were surprised to find out exactly what he was working on.
It usually takes a new language a few years after its introduction to gain an audience. But Swift reached an audience at an unprecedented rate. Swift is built for the average programmer. Even the most basic applications can be written in the language, and endowed with some pretty intelligent tools, the language offers an effective way to learn how to write on your own. But the main reason for the popularity of the language lies elsewhere. Till its creation, the developers created applications using Objective-C. Swift is much better and more efficient than Objective-C.
In 2015, a new version of Swift 2.0 was released. It differs from its predecessor in higher performance, a new API for debugging, optimized syntax, and a function to check the availability of language features for operating systems for which development is underway. In the same year, just six months after the previous update, a new version appeared – 3.0.
The Swift 4.0 update became available in the fall of 2017, and precisely one year later, the next stable version, 4.2, was released. Simultaneously with it, beta version 5.0 was introduced, which later became stable.
In September 2019, another major release took place, namely 5.1. At the end of 2021, version 5.5 was relevant.
Who uses the Swift language?
- Mobile developers who code for iOS.
- Developers of applications for the macOS operating system.
- Gamedev developers who create games for Apple systems.
- Back-end website developers are working with Swift web libraries.
What is the language for?
- To create applications for macOS or iOS systems. This language is mainly used in development for Apple devices.
- For sharing with C and Objective-C – Swift works together with these languages. Old application code is written in Objective-C.
- To support the server side of sites and web applications. This is a rare use case for Swift, but it is possible thanks to special libraries – they extend the capabilities of the language and adapt it to the web.
Features of Swift
- Multi-paradigm. This means that the language is suitable for different programming principles: functional, object-oriented, and imperative.
- Static typing. A variable is assigned a type for the duration of its existence. If it contains a number, it will not be possible to write a string or an array.
- Optional type declaration. You can declare a variable and not specify its type directly. The compiler will understand it according to the data that will be written to it. If you create a variable A and immediately assign the value 10 to it, it is automatically treated as an integer.
The Swift language was developed by Apple as a replacement for the Objective-C development tool, taking into account all its shortcomings.
In this regard, the specialists got a tool devoid of the shortcomings of its predecessor and several other PLs.
Other interesting features:
- automatic memory management;
- no uninitialized variables;
- no-undefined variables;
- no overflow errors;
- explicit null handling is in effect;
- no errors with array dimensions.
Due to these features, the development process using Apple’s PL requires less time, effort, and resources than Objective-C.
The programmer does not need to worry about possible bugs and errors, conflicts between code sections, and various failures. Writing and reading are made much easier by moving away from the syntactic verbosity of Objective-C.
Pros of Swift
Just a year after its release, in 2015, Apple made the Swift language 100% free. Even though, in general, this cannot be called a rare phenomenon in the world, this kind of generosity for Apple looks highly unusual. However, this move paid off.
Swift is named after the Swift, one of the fastest birds. Its main advantage is speed and performance. Apple claims the language is 2.6 times faster than Objective-C and 8.4 times faster than Python 2.7. For some algorithms, it outperforms C++. Due to the high speed of code execution, applications on Swift work quickly. At the same time, they are productive and do not overload computing power.
The Swift language implements automatic memory management ARC (Automatic Reference Counting). A particular garbage collector reduces the amount of memory used by 20%, significantly speeding up the system while the application runs. ARC relieves developers of the need to read memory manually.
Explicit handling of null
The null value is handled so that the code is safer.
Open source availability
Swift is an open source development language. This means it’s available to anyone who wants to build iOS apps. Swift developers can contribute to the development of the language by sharing their bug-fixing solutions, best code snippets, and various ideas for improving the language. In just a few years of being an open-source solution, Swift has gained a solid and supportive community and many third-party development tools.
Swift is a language with a simple and non-overloaded syntax. This makes the code easier to understand. The creators of the language are constantly trying to make it more understandable. It does not contain bulky constructions or an abundance of brackets and commas. Swift is like a natural language, staying clean and expressive even when writing complex code. Non-obvious errors are less common than in classic C-like languages.
Easy to read, easy to maintain
Swift has a simple and expressive syntax and grammar. It’s much easier to read and write than Objective-C. Software developers need to write less code to create the same tasks in Swift rather than in Objective-C. This results in faster coding, faster problem resolution, and easier maintenance due to fewer bugs in the code.
Swift provides software developers with LLVM tools, modular and reusable compilers, and toolchain technologies to build applications quickly. These tools allow assembly code to be compiled into machine code, resulting in faster code processing.
Great demand in the market
Even a novice Swift developer with modest experience and a portfolio can easily find a job on a job site or be able to do their project and earn good money from it. There is no reason to believe this situation will worsen in the coming years.
Swift helps developers quickly identify and fix bugs before compiling code. To prevent code from crashing, it initializes variables before using them, checks arrays and integers for overflow, and manages memory automatically with ARC. Moreover, Swift has improved the null pointer, preventing its objects from being null by default. This results in a cleaner and safer code that does not cause errors during compilation.
Increased team scalability
With Swift, project managers can quickly scale their development teams and add new developers as needed. This is possible due to the programming language’s simplicity, conciseness, and readability. Java, Python, C#, and C++ experts can code in Swift to some extent due to its proximity to these languages and English and the shallow learning curve.
You can easily integrate Swift with the Objective-C and Cocoa frameworks. Software developers can use Objective-C in Swift and Swift in Objective-C interchangeably. This compatibility is beneficial for large and long-term projects where software developers can take advantage of the best features of the two languages in the same project.
Additional features from Apple
The corporation constantly maintains the language: keeps understandable training materials in the public domain, and updates versions. The built-in XCode development environment in macOS supports Swift out of the box, and for visual applications, there is a handy Apple Swift Playgrounds tool. This is a “sandbox” in which you can practice creating applications. It is available for macOS and iOS versionsten0 and up. Documentation can be viewed on the company’s website, and the official Swift language tutorial is available from Apple Books.
Cons of Swift
Swift is a young, developed language undergoing various changes and experiments. This means that it has few native libraries and few development frameworks. Although the Swift community is increasing and has many experts, it is still not always possible to quickly find all programming solutions compared to other programming languages.
Compatibility issues with Swift version
Since the developers of Swift make many changes to the language in new versions, it is subject to version compatibility issues. Thus, if a developer decides to migrate to a more recent version of Swift, they may encounter some difficulties, including the need to rewrite their application code. To deal with this problem, the Swift developers have created the Swift Migration Tool for XCode, which makes it much easier to migrate code from version to version.
Compatibility issues with older OS version
Since Swift is a new development language, it does not work with older operating systems. It only runs with iOS 7, macOS 10.9, and later. For older platforms, software developers must use the long-standing Objective-C.
Limited number of libraries
Their number is gradually replenished; however, because the tool appeared relatively recently, it is inferior to the same Python in terms of the volume of additions. Moreover, libraries for new versions are not compatible with older releases.
Narrow specialization and the need to use Apple technology
Swift is mainly used for developing Apple devices. There are no other uses for the language, with very few exceptions. This limits its application. Swift on Windows or Linux is a technically possible but inconvenient and incomplete solution. Development in this language usually takes place in the Apple ecosystem in the XCode programming environment. For macOS and iOS, there are libraries and other components for Swift development that are not available in other operating systems. Therefore, for comfortable work, you need an Apple device. It must be powerful: running and building written applications are resource-intensive processes.
Small community of developers
Swift is a niche language that is used only when developing Apple devices. Therefore, it does not have such a vast community as universal programming languages. The problem is gradually fading away in parallel with the rapid growth of the tool’s popularity. Still, at the moment, newbies are at risk of not finding a solution to a specific problem with the code. But this minus is compensated by available training materials from Apple on the official website.
Swift is a young but rapidly growing programming language for Apple operating systems that is a viable alternative to Objective-C. Many software developers prefer this programming language because it is much easier to write, read, debug, and maintain and offers modern development tools.
Meanwhile, many companies are also starting to hire mobile developers who work with Swift, as it allows you to create powerful and efficient software solutions for iOS much faster and at a reasonable price.
What is object-oriented programming (OOP)
Object-oriented programming (OOP) is an approach in which a program is viewed as a set of objects interacting with each other. Each has properties and behavior. OOP makes writing code faster and more readable.
Everyone usually starts learning programming by writing programs in a procedural style. The program expects some data as input, performs a series of procedures (they are also called functions), and then returns some results.
Conventional programming is often understood as procedural programming, which is based on procedures and functions. A function is a mini-program that receives some data as input, does something inside itself, and can return some data as a result of calculations.
Functions are useful when you need to pack many commands into one. For example, checking an e-mail address may consist of a single check for regular expressions or contain many commands: querying dictionaries, checking against spammer databases, and even matching against already known e-mail addresses. You can pack any combination of actions into a function and then call them all in one motion.
Procedural programming works ideally in simple programs where all problems can be solved, roughly speaking, with a dozen functions. Functions are neatly nested inside and interact with each other; passing data from one function to another is possible.
Initially, all programs were written with a procedural approach, but when the programs became extensive, it became clear that this approach was unsuitable; it was difficult to manage some entities and decompression. And when procedural programming was no longer enough, an object-oriented approach was invented.
OOP is used when writing operating systems, DBMS, compilers, drivers, and many application programs. For example, suffice it to say that almost all known browsers, Microsoft Office, Adobe Photoshop, and Illustrator, are products of object-oriented programming.
The main goal of OOP is to make complex code easier. To do this, the program is divided into independent blocks, which we call objects.
An object is a collection of data and functions, just like traditional functional programming. You can imagine that they just took a piece of the program, put it in a box, and closed the lid. This box with lids is an object.
Programmers agreed that the data inside an object would be called properties, and the functions would be called methods. But these are just words; they are the same variables and functions.
A fundamental building block in OOP is class. It represents a description (specification) of multiple objects from reality. A class is a template describing the properties, state types, and behaviors common to the entire set. Put another way: we describe in the class all the data that a real object should contain to solve a particular programming task.
We can think of a class as a programmer-created data type that contains its data types and functions.
Basic principles of OOP
Objects are characterized by four words: encapsulation, abstraction, inheritance, and polymorphism.
Encapsulation (also known as “information hiding”) is one of the main principles of object-oriented programming. With it, an object must provide its user with only the necessary management means.
For example, an office worker only uses the peripherals of a PC. He does not need to know the model of the processor, its architecture, the way of connection to the motherboard, etc. These components and the knowledge about them (processor, motherboard) appear hidden to him.
The creator of the classes determines what is hidden and what is publicly visible. This is done by explicitly defining as private any field or method that we do not want to be used by another class.
Abstraction is the process of hiding unnecessary details from the user. For example, when you send a message, you enter the text and press the send button. Your phone shows that the message has been sent, but what’s happening in the background when you tap send is hidden because you don’t need to know.
In other words, abstraction allows you to simplify complex concepts as much as possible and handle the simpler version. This is precisely why the stereotype is at the heart of OOP – you can think of very complex objects as simple ones and simplify the work process.
Inheritance is also a fundamental principle in object-oriented programming. Through it, a class can “inherit” methods and properties from another, more general class. Let me use an illustrative example with animals.
The wolf belongs to the family “Canidae” (which translates as “canine”). All wolves are quadrupeds, mammals, and predators. These characteristics of the wolf can be assigned to some more general class if we follow the association with animals – at the “class” or “order” level in the hierarchy of the animal world.
All classes corresponding to this characteristic are linked to this higher class. This means that they get this general information from that more high class, which saves you having to write it out every time for every class you want to have those attributes. This class, which is inherited, is called the parent class or base class (base class, super class).
Another important principle of object-oriented programming is the so-called polymorphism. Let’s go back to the animal example. We have defined a class – the family “Canidae.” But in this “family,” there are many and varied predators – from wolves to foxes to dogs. They have different behavior when it comes to hunting.
Polymorphism allows us to treat any of these animals as a member of the “Canidae” family and command it to make a catch, no matter what precisely the “animal” we’re steering is. To do this, polymorphism uses overwriting methods in inherited classes to change their actual behavior inherited by the base class. This is what allows for multiple different implementations of the same thing.
Benefits of object oriented programming
The first programs in high-level programming languages were not structured, and this did not cause problems because the amount of code was, by modern standards, negligible. In addition, there were no repositories then, there was no Internet, and replicating the source codes of software products was extremely difficult.
As hardware and software competed, the amount of source code in programs began to skyrocket. Now, to support it, a specific architecture was already required. Various approaches to the design of source codes began to be applied, and eventually, programming paradigms appeared. OOP stood out at once with several critically essential differences:
- Convenient division of development tasks between different programmers, departments, and companies. Modularity through encapsulation may have been a critical reason OOP is so widespread.
- Potential for scaling. You can add new components, extending the already written software – and everything will work.
- Processing of heterogeneous data structures. Thanks to polymorphism, OOP software can be flexibly modified, supplemented, and “updated.” This is an indispensable property for commercial products, and it is they who determine revenues and budgets and create a resource base for new and new projects.
The repetition of OOP code has led to the creation of class libraries. You can spend less and less time on getting the results already obtained earlier – and it’s not even essential who precisely and on what projects the previous developments were made. This is how the banana paradox began to take shape: on the one hand, simplification of development by replicating already implemented classes. On the other hand, there is a suboptimal use of hardware resources.
While developing a software product, extensions and additions already implemented in the connected libraries may be required, and then it remains only to use. Something similar is now used in many commercial products, not only software ones.
The idea of ”development in reserve” is quite convenient from a sales point of view. As well as choosing a high pace instead of perfectionism as a code. It is better to sell today and hand over the project tomorrow than to stretch everything out for years and fly out of the market.
For all its shortcomings, object-oriented programming makes it faster, more economical, and more convenient to manage the distributed development process to get working code. Yes, perhaps there are significant non-optimalities, even a lot of them. But the project is already working, at least in the form of a prototype. This is enough for presentations, getting the first customers, and implementations.
All the same, the initial marketing, interface, and many other ideas will have to be repeatedly refined and possibly changed. From the point of view of a company and especially a startup, it is more profitable to move faster.
The pros of object oriented programming can be summarized as follows:
- Easy to read. There is no need to look for functions in the code and determine what they are responsible for.
- Quickly to write. You can quickly create the entities that the program needs to work with.
- It is easier to implement extensive functionality. Since it takes less time to write code, you can create an application with many features much faster.
- Less repetitions. No need to write the same type of functions for different entities.
Minuses of object oriented programming
- Consumes more memory. Objects consume more RAM than primitive data types.
- Reduces performance. Many things are technically implemented differently, so they use more resources.
- Difficult to start. The OOP paradigm is more complex than functional programming, so it takes more time to start.
The future of OOP
Will object-oriented programming survive, or is it just a fad that will soon disappear?
Classes have found their place in most modern programming languages. This alone suggests that they are destined to stay. Classes will become a standard set of concepts for every programmer shortly; in the same way, many today use dynamic data structures and recursion, which were also a novelty twenty years ago. At the same time, classes are just another new construct, along with the others. We need to find out what situations they are suitable for, and this is where we will use them. Choosing the right tool for a particular task is a must for every artisan and even more so for every engineer.
OOP plunges many into a state of euphoria. The hype here and there promises us incredible things, and even some researchers seem inclined to consider OOP as a panacea that can solve all software development problems. Over time, this euphoria will gradually subside. And after a period of disappointment, people will probably stop talking about OOP, just like you can hardly hear from anyone today about structured programming. But classes will be taken for granted, and we can finally understand what they are: just components that help build modular and extensible software.
In the new century, multi-core and multi-processor systems began to spread massively. A little later, there was a need for distributed computing and computing on graphics processors. It turned out that OOP copes with such tasks much worse than functional programs. Even based on this one factor, one can doubt the endless dominance of OOP.
Of course, the proportions in development will change. It’s already happening. In addition, fundamentally different, new approaches will appear sooner or later – and they may become unattainably more productive, especially on modernized hardware.
Nevertheless, so far, OOP remains a reliable, convenient tool. Nothing seems to bode well for significant advances in the coming years, so you can safely use object-oriented programming as a personal career plan and to launch projects.
Outstaffing allows you to solve the problem of attracting a specialist in a few days. Reduce the company’s administrative and financial burden while maintaining direct employee management. Reduce the risks of insurance and other unforeseen events with personnel. Remove from the company obligations in labor disputes with employees.
What is outstaffing?
Often, at some stage in the development of a business of any size, its owners and participants face a new problem for themselves. You need to solve various tasks or perform types of work for which you need to involve a third-party contractor or even a whole team. But it is impossible to hire such personnel in the company’s staff, or it is simply unprofitable for several reasons. For example, we are talking exclusively about project work, so it makes no sense to hire employees.
The best solution is to contact specialized companies and order an outstaffing service.
The essence of this service is the involvement of employees without registering them in the state to perform various work for the customer, carried out within certain types or functions of his entrepreneurial activity. Specialized outstaffing firms provide selection and employment of appropriate employees.
Outstaffing appeared in the USA in the 70-the 80s of the last century. However, it is believed that Japanese business people became its progenitor. Be that as it may, there is only one reason for the appearance of outstaffing – the desire to save money. The prerequisite for its formation was the economic downturn, which did not allow companies to maintain large staffs. And the fact that 30% of the working time of an average American company was spent on processing personnel records made us invent such a service as outstaffing.
The service concept is a symbiosis of personnel leasing and outsourcing. Outstaffing involves the removal of an employee from the client company’s staff and his registration in the contractor company. Despite these formalities, the employee works and performs the duties of the client company. Moreover, depending on the agreements, the employee can work on the territory of the customer company. With the help of outstaffing, companies have increased the number of their employees without the undue burden of formal procedures and loss of productivity.
When is outstaffing required?
Outstaffing of personnel is relevant in several cases:
- The customer does not intend to burden himself with the additional burden of extra payments to selected employees and the responsibility of deductions to funds and the amount of taxes in this regard;
- The customer needs to release the personnel department and account for part of the load. Accounting services and outstaffing personnel records are assigned to the provider company. Such a move also reduces labor disputes among employees;
- The customer, who turned to a specialized outstaffing company, intends to minimize the risks of possible consequences of inspections by various authorities and regulatory authorities;
- The customer does not want to “inflate the staff” at the expense of employees or temporary workers on probation;
- The customer would like to remotely involve a specialist located in another region to solve problems, but at the same time, it is not advisable to open a representative office in it for any reason;
- The client intends to use the services of foreign citizens.
It should be noted that representatives of various businesses order such services. Often people turn to outstaffing companies in search of accountants, designers, CEOs, IT specialists, engineers of multiple profiles, security specialists, and many others.
Differences between outstaffing, outsourcing, and leasing
The concepts of “personnel leasing,” “outsourcing,” and “outstaffing” are often confused, since all of them, to one degree or another, describe technologies for attracting third-party workers to solve the company’s problems.
However, outstaffing, in a certain sense, is the opposite procedure of outsourcing since, in this case, the employee continues to work in his place but is removed from the enterprise’s staff and registered in another organization. At the same time, he regularly receives a salary and counts on official registration and social guarantees. With outsourcing, the specialist performs his duties, remaining on the territory and subordinate to the contractor, solves a specific problem, and receives remuneration by the amount of work performed. Thus, the client transfers to the outsourcer, not an employee, but non-core functions for the company.
Unlike outsourcing, personnel outstaffing services are documented differently. If, in the first case, the basis for the provision of labor is the contract concluded between the customer and the outsourcer, then in the second case, the outstaffer formally registers employees at his place. Thus, when outstaffing, the employee officially has no legal relationship with the client: all obligations to him are fulfilled by the agency that sent him.
Finally, the critical difference between leasing and outstaffing personnel is the mechanism for selecting and providing labor. When leasing, the agency independently searches for employees with the required qualifications, concludes contracts with them, and transfers them to the customer; The client can even keep the most experienced specialists from among them through official re-registration. In outstaffing, on the contrary, we are talking about operations with personnel already at the customer’s disposal: the company outsources its employees.
Therefore, an entrepreneur who wants to use new personnel management technologies should clearly understand what outsourcing and outstaffing of personnel are, what are their advantages and main differences, and why mixing these concepts can lead to an erroneous interpretation of the terms of the contract, and, as a result, to labor conflicts, fines and other undesirable consequences.
Relationship between the outstaffer and the customer
The relationship between the outstaffer and the customer firm that needs employees is formalized through a staffing agreement.
All conditions under which an employee is accepted come from the customer. He sets their wages and appoints the number of possible bonuses and compensations. The task of the outstaffer is to find good personell who could constantly be ready to solve the different needs of clients. For employees, personnel and accounting records are maintained strictly within the framework of Russian legislation. An employment contract is concluded between the outstaffing company and each employee. It can be urgent (only for the duration of the agreement for the provision of personnel to the customer) or indefinite – if the specialist is precious, and it is assumed that he will be constantly provided with work.
Outstaffing is not a tax evasion scheme but a legal mechanism for optimizing company expenses. Taxes on employees are paid by the one who is supposed to: the organization in which the employee is employed (that is, the outstaff provider). The amount of taxes is included in the customer company’s costs when agreeing with the provider.
What are the general benefits of outstaffing
The use of this service provides the company with many advantages:
- Decrease in the number of employees in the organization. The official staff of the company is significantly reduced because, formally, the team works for another employer;
- Simplifies the HR process. The document flow of the company is reduced, and the load on the accounting department is noticeably reduced because the business partner is responsible for the design and financial support of the personnel;
- The category of the taxpayer is preserved. By reducing the staff, the enterprise retains the status of a small enterprise by limiting the maximum number of employees. This allows you to use the most profitable system of tax deductions;
- Optimization of the company’s costs. Firstly, the dismissal of several employees leads to a decrease in the payroll. Also, the prices of social and tax deductions are reduced. Secondly, the customer periodically transfers payment for services to the agency instead of multiple prices for each employee;
- Simplifies the registration of foreign personnel. Employment of a migrant is associated with the need to collect many documents. This causes downtime. The services of a professional contractor allow you to quickly solve this problem because the outstaffer promptly generates a package of necessary certificates and permits;
- The burden on the accounting department is reduced since it is not necessary to calculate and accrue wages to rented workers to pay taxes for them;
- Outstaffing of recruitment services allows you to reduce the cost of finding and retaining valuable specialists;
- Thanks to the rental of labor, unpopular vacancies can be quickly filled;
- The company does not need to resolve labor disputes since the outstaffer is involved in scheduling, payroll, and other potential conflict situations;
- Reduces the likelihood of problems as a result of checking the company by migration or other third-party services;
- The enterprise can implement resource-intensive or third-party projects without expanding the staff by searching for and registering new employees;
- As a result of the optimization of personnel and staffing, the profitability of the company as a whole increases;
- Legal and administrative responsibility for the leased personnel passes from the enterprise to the outstaffer.
General flaws of outstaffing
- The customer cannot influence the quality of work;
- Non-staff employees are not required to comply with internal labor regulations;
- The customer cannot apply disciplinary sanctions to such employees;
- If the employees do not meet the qualification requirements, the problem can be solved only through the outstaffer. Since it is considered his duty to provide an employee with the required qualifications and not be responsible for the quality of work, the requirements for their capabilities should be specified in the contract for the provision of employees.
- The loyalty of workers to an enterprise that is not their official employer may be less than acceptable;
- In the labor collective, conflicts and contradictions between the company’s own and rented employees are possible;
- The overall security of the company is reduced, and the risk of information leakage due to the actions of employees who are not obliged to keep commercial secrets increases;
- Difficulties arise in quality control of work since rented employees are formally subordinate to the outstaffer;
- If different outstaffers are engaged in other areas of activity, the company’s management may lose control over the situation;
- The company’s personnel costs are increasing, as it must pay not only the salary of the hired workers but also the remuneration of the outstaffer.
Pros of outstaffing for the employer
- Increase the expenses shown in the balance sheet (and, as a result, reduce taxes on profits).
- Reduce staffing costs for stationery, equipment, software, and consumables. Prices are significantly reduced in the accounting and personnel departments, which lose some of their functions. In our practice, small companies often wholly get rid of HR. The outstaffer still has a comprehensive enough staff to meet any needs.
- Provide flexibility in personnel management. The amount of labor corresponds to the actual amount of work. Employees are not idle if they are not busy. At the same time, the possibility of rapid expansion is also preserved, mainly if an IT department is recruited.
- Facilitate the task of finding valuable personnel. Outstaffers usually already have them; they value them. Rubrain, for example, specializes in senior programmers and top IT professionals with an extensive knowledge base. In the free labor market, such experts cannot be found, and if there is a need for a specific list of skills, you can wait months. Outstaff allows you to solve the problem of attracting a specialist in a few days. With this service, the search for developers is much faster.
- Reduce the company’s administrative and financial burden while maintaining direct employee management. This is especially true for startups with small IT products that have little experience yet and large firms that want to cut some of their managers.
- Reduce the risks of insurance and other unforeseen events with personnel.
- Remove from the company obligations in labor disputes with employees.
Reducing the cost (including time) for attracting and servicing personnel leads to a decrease in the price of each person-hour of work of the company’s employees. This leads to a decrease in the cost of manufactured products and, as a result, an increase in the organization’s actual (non-accounting) profit. That is why the outstaffing of IT personnel and office workers has been successfully practiced in Japan and the USA for over 50 years.
Cons of outstaffing for the employer
- Skilled workers have low interest and are not motivated, as they understand that the work is temporary.
- The impact on staff is reduced as workers rarely hold on to temporary jobs.
Pros of outstaffing for the staff
- Official employment, complete social package.
- Receipt of wages in the amount that a full-time employee receives when performing the same work.
- There is no need to look for a job independently; a recruitment agency does this.
Cons of outstaffing for the staff
- The work is temporary, which means there is no confidence in the future.
- Career growth is minimal.
It is obvious that other things being equal, additional competitive advantages are obtained by enterprises that actively use modern personnel technologies, which include outsourcing and outstaffing in personnel management. Thanks to such simple and effective solutions, you can save the company’s money and resources, optimize business processes, reduce the number of non-core employees, simplify accounting operations, and simultaneously ensure you get the workforce necessary to solve current production problems. Therefore, such tools must be in the arsenal of an entrepreneur who will build a successful business.
In recent years, there has not been a single central payment system that has not announced the use or implementation of blockchain in its services. Western Union, Visa, Mastercard, PayPal, SWIFT, and significant commercial and central banks, are all showing great interest in the new distributive registry technology and moving from theory and testing to the practice of blockchain transfers.
Blockchain in payment systems
Blockchain is a new way to create databases. The peculiarity is that, besides storing information about the transaction itself, the database is a source of “truth.” Where “true” means the belief that the information on the network is accurate and not included in the block without the consent of other users.
This is achieved by recording information on the blockchain in relative “layers” (blocks) and storing them all in the system. Old “layers” cannot be deleted or changed, and the database itself is not stored on the server but in the form of multiple copies on network participant devices (nodes). In this case, information entered in one instance is automatically duplicated in all other models.
Blockchain’s defining feature of the distributive system of financial operations (transactions) is storing the information array not on one server but on many computers connected to a single network. The moment when a new user joins the ecosystem, the blockchain automatically expands its sphere of influence. As a result, the virtual architecture is complicated to hack – almost impossible. On the other hand, various financial and credit institutions are constantly suffering from permanent attacks. Moreover, quite often, hackers achieve their goals. This is precisely the main problem of the banking sector. The use of blockchain in the financial industry can eliminate this problem.
As a continuous chain of information blocks consisting of transaction data, the blockchain conducts all financial transactions anonymously, excluding a series of intermediaries in the fund’s traffic. The Bitcoin electronic payment system and many other tokens successfully operate based on this technology.
Customer identification and KYC
Confirming the client’s identity is one of the main functions of any financial and credit institution. In world practice, this process is called “know your customer” (KYC), which in the Russian version sounds like “know your customer.” This event is often hampered by the presence of disparate information, which, moreover, is stored in organizations separate from the bank. In addition to this unfortunate fact for bankers, providing the necessary data is unrealistic and cannot satisfy all interested parties. The use of the blockchain will allow the procedure described above to be significantly simplified; along with this characteristic, the identification process will acquire some plasticity.
In other words, all the necessary information about each client is in the general list in a unified form. Each bank has access to the register since all financial institutions store it simultaneously. However, making any adjustments to the list will not be possible. Such a policy will make life easier for both banks and customers:
- Decisions on loans will be made almost at lightning speed.
- The full range of banking services will be provided no less quickly.
- Prompt processing of all financial transactions will become possible.
There is a real possibility of exempting the client from verifying his identity. A person entered a financial institution using blockchain technology, and bank employees already know all the ins and outs of it – that is, a credit history.
Payments and international transfers
The lion’s share of transactions of any commercial, financial institution falls on internal and external transfers of money amounts of clients of a particular bank. The integration of innovative technology will make it possible to modify the parameters and quality of banking services, particularly transfers, which, after the introduction of the blockchain, will a priori reach a new level.
The design of bank transfers is based on the addresses of at least two financial institutions, and often with the addition of intermediaries – intermediate accounts. To put it mildly, all this slows down the financial transaction and significantly raises its cost. Foreign banks have been trying to solve this problem for quite a long time. As a result, the “painful” search revealed a compelling product – transactions based on B2B (business to business).
This technology, based on the identical blockchain, greatly accelerates cross-border transfers. Clones of this technology are being actively introduced into global payment systems and banks. In the well-known structure of international transfers, SWIFT is actively testing its prototype, which will significantly increase the transparency of transactions and allow you to track financial transactions at various stages. No less well-known company VISA stated that it is conducting similar developments. The project being developed by the company is referred to as “Visa B2B Connect”. Ultimately, the mechanism for transferring funds between users of this structure will receive the characteristic “instantly.”
Blockchain in mortgage lending
The mortgage lending market is a vivid example of how blockchain can be used in the banking sector. Financial institutions can tokenize assets (securities), and the bank will be able to lend to many borrowers. Then, consolidate all loans into one security – for example, mortgage-backed securities (MSB). Subsequently, it can be sold through over-the-counter platforms. However, the value models of the secondary market for MBS are currently overwhelmingly weak due to a lack of transparency. The integration of blockchain technology will radically change the sluggish situation.
For example, a bank fixes all loans of this type in the blockchain structure, dividing the entire flow of funds into smart (intelligent) contracts and creating MBS checked online. Let’s assume that the verifiers can see how the initial payments were made in clever agreements and how the subsequent payments are made. Such an approach would significantly reduce the time it takes to assess credit risks based on delinquent contributions and underlie the phenomenon of mortgages.
Mortgage installments could also be posted through innovative technology and recorded online and fully automatically. It would also reduce the time for evaluating and marketing the PBS. In addition, thanks to blockchain technology, securities can be sold in any corner of the planet where there is the Internet.
Cryptocurrency and commercial financial institutions
While talking about the blockchain, you still, albeit unwittingly, touch on the topic of cyber money. In addition, virtual currency is closely related to both blockchain technology and banking structure. The appearance of the Bitcoin EPS (electronic payment system) with an internal BTC coin, the issue of which is not controlled by any state institution, forced financial specialists to recall the “prehistoric” times when any private bank could issue its currency. An obvious question arises in specific layers since this fact took place in the history of civilization, why not revive this practice again.
Advantages of blockchain for payments
The financial blockchain covers several security issues. First, it eliminates the possibility of hackers attacking the database and stealing information to demand ransoms from banks or take money from their users. Because the data is distributed across multiple nodes, there is no specific server or another place to attack.
Encryption technology also makes it easier to identify users and detect hackers.
The blockchain uses cryptographic encryption protocols, so the data in many distributed ledgers is securely protected. For example, blockchain messengers often use end-to-end encryption: only the addressee and the sender can read the message. Also, “blockchains” do not have a single server that can be hacked and get all the data.
Most blockchains allow anonymous registration. For example, online bitcoin wallets are not tied to a passport, phone number, or owner’s name. This excludes the possibility that the user’s identity will be established and his data and financial transactions will be made public.
Transactions and other banking activities today require much time to manage, approve, and register; some actions are still performed manually. Fintech blockchain quickly solves this problem by providing instant authentication and verification, which helps to streamline processes and reduce paperwork.
The ability to automate processes and quickly process transactions allows you to reduce costs and staff. Blockchain makes it possible to eliminate complex workflow because any operation can be traced. The technology guarantees the data’s immutability, and the human factor is excluded. There are already projects on the blockchain in the field of issuing loans, customer identification, and corporate financing.
The transfer of data within the blockchain is instantaneous. Therefore, it gained popularity in finance: cryptocurrencies within one ecosystem can be transferred to any of its users in a second. Thus, the blockchain finds severe applications where information transfer speed and reliability are essential.
Information about each transaction is visible and quickly tracked if verification is needed. Blockchain banking leaves no room for money laundering, fraud, and other fake transactions.
Blockchain-based intelligent contracts perform some actions (such as transferring money) after certain conditions are met. This significantly reduces bureaucracy, provides trust between partners, speeds up processes, and reduces the need for third-party intermediaries.
Blockchain information is distributed throughout the network. There are no “master” and “secondary” computers in the ecosystem, which is the blockchain system’s key advantage. It cannot be harmed by disabling several devices. The blockchain will cease to exist only if all computers supporting it are disconnected from the network. Since there is no “master” computer, gaining control of the system is complex. Therefore, large blockchains are independent: they are not controlled by the state, banks, or even development companies.
Data volume and storage
Powerful servers are not needed to create and maintain a blockchain; it is enough to make a network of ordinary computers. At the same time, the data will not suffer from the actions of intruders: there is no central storage of information that can be disabled. The data in the blockchain cannot be corrected or changed, so any information added to it will be stored in its original form. But the amount of storage occupied by the blockchain is more significant than that of a standard database. Containing similar information, so as the ecosystem grows, the blockchain should attract new participants.
Blockchain disadvantages and limitations for payments
As it turned out, blockchain is not a universal technology for banks. R3, from the very beginning, emphasized the need to process vast amounts of data without the intervention of third parties while maintaining process transparency. Therefore, in 2017, the consortium abandoned blockchain development. The developers said that the technology is not intended for processing large data sets, is poorly compatible with banking standards, and its implementation does not fit into their vision.
Technically, the blockchain requires a considerable amount of data storage capacity because each node must store a copy of the state of the entire chain. And according to forecasts, more than 20 billion devices will be connected worldwide by 2022: for the blockchain, this is an incredible amount of data.
Blockchain has problems with regulators, as well as scalability and security. Although it is tough to hack the blockchain network (over the ten years of the existence of bitcoin, no one has succeeded), in small networks, there is the possibility of a “51% attack”.
In addition, there have been significant advances in quantum computing in recent years. It is possible that over time, the most powerful quantum computers can crack the codes used to confirm transactions. The solution could be to upgrade the protocols to new ones resistant to quantum computing.
So far, everything is moving towards official permission to use the blockchain and cryptocurrencies, but only with the maximum degree of control from the authorities – customer identification and anti-money laundering. Over time, banks will probably expand their horizons and offer deposits in cryptocurrencies and other services.
In the coming years, public and private blockchain networks implemented within a company or group of companies will likely develop emerging business models based on the interaction between private and public blockchains.
Introduction – what is a web design, and why is it needed?
Web design is one of the stages of website development. Sites are created for e-commerce (online stores), services, or informational blogs. Still, everything related to the appearance and visual component of the area falls under the concept of “web design.”
Creating a ready-made site layout involves working on configuration and visualization. The structure is the arrangement of various design elements on the network (pictures, buttons, texts, forms, etc.), and visualization is the detailed study of the system with the addition of colors. Professionals working in the field of web design are called web designers.
Modern Web design has long gone beyond the usual aesthetics and visual beauty. The area of responsibility of this area also includes the convenience and functionality of sites. This is not a whim of designers but the current market trends. Users are focused on user-friendly interfaces, so web designers must adapt to these requests and create aesthetically pleasing sites with a clear and thoughtful structure.
In addition to web design, there is another direction called UX UI design or interface design. Web Design focuses exclusively on websites and web applications, while UX UI design focuses on all interfaces in general (websites, web and mobile applications, services, etc.). Those who are engaged in UX UI design are called interface designers.
Twelve CSS tricks for web design
CSS (which stands for Cascading Style Sheets) is a language used to describe how HTML elements should be displayed. It is one of the first technologies explored by future front-end and web developers. Knowing the basics of CSS is just a must-have.
And although it seems that CSS is only needed to describe the colors of elements, their positioning, and the like, it can also be used to create animations that “animate” our applications and sites. Few of us have probably paid enough attention to CSS and studied this language intensely. Therefore, some practical advice on using CSS will be helpful to many. In our article, we have collected 12 such valuable tricks.
Vertical alignment with flex
The Flexible Box Layout Model (or just Flexbox) has gained much popularity since its inception. And this is not surprising because this approach dramatically facilitates the positioning and alignment of elements. Applying flex (the flexbox property) made vertical alignment quick and easy.
Blend Modes (Blends)
You can do many cool things with CSS, like applying layer blend modes. There are two properties for using blend modes: mix-blend-mode (defines the blending of elements that are next to each other) and background-blend-mode (depicts the blending of background images).
Parallax is a prevalent thing in modern web design. The effect is based on the fact that the scrolling speed of the background image is different from the scrolling speed of the content.
Shape outside (giving the element a non-rectangular shape)
Another great feature that is available in CSS but little used is the shape-outside property.
Trimming a string
Cropping an image with clip-path
Sometimes a designer gets too creative, and you must find ways to fit the image into a given geometric shape, such as a triangle. To do this, you can use the clip-path property.
Full height and width
If we want our app or site to fit the viewport size, the vh and vw units come to the rescue. Vh means 100% viewport height, and vw means 100% viewport width.
If you work with images, you can achieve exciting effects. CSS allows for a wide range of filters so developers can work with graphics without resorting to Photoshop.
Animations on the site grab the user’s attention, which is why they are so often used in web design.
Another kind of animation that can be done with CSS is rotation—this is a great way to spice up a loader element, logo, or gallery image.
If you have ever done graphic design, you should know how valuable masks can be. But they can be used in a graphical editor and in CSS.
Zoom on hover
When creating image galleries, highlighting the images that the cursor is hovering over often becomes necessary. Great idea to add a zoom effect.
Ten key web design trends for 2022
Applying a dark interface to page design
The process of popularizing this design began in 2019. At first, dark themes were used only in some applications. Today, developers use this look for websites as well. The leading brands that actively offer dark themes are Apple, Facebook, Telegram, YouTube, and many others.
The use of the dark theme is controlled manually using the settings. Some options allow you to set a timer for switching. In this case, the user is no longer involved in this.
Dark mode encourages users to quickly scan the site’s content and focus on critical aspects of the page: charts, graphs, and stocks. The dark shade of the background with the right color palette and typography of the rest of the elements evokes an emotional response, pushing users to target actions and increasing audience loyalty.
Even though this design option is no longer so new, it will still be used in 2022.
Use unique fonts to highlight headings or essential information
Fonts have always been used not only to convey text but also to create a beautiful appearance. Web designers and graphic designers create unique options they will actively use in the future. With their help, you can get several advantages:
- creating a unique look;
- the ability to highlight important information;
- creating an aesthetically pleasing design;
- attracting the user’s attention to the content.
Nowadays are popular options with serifs or curls, making the design more authentic. Often used for highlighting is lettering. It consists of different heights of letters in one word, as well as the presence of additional elements for decoration.
Another point that is associated with fonts is adaptation. The site should adapt its size by adjusting it to the screen size of the device.
Microsoft will add new default fonts to Microsoft Office in 2022. The company considers the Calibri font obsolete and ordered five original fonts from third-party designers, which users can test on social networks within six months.
The following fonts will be added to Microsoft Office 365 office applications:
Representatives of the company believe that the type of font used when writing resumes and emails for newsletters affects the user’s first impression. Calibri and the new fonts will be available in the office programs menu.
Memphis style design
One of the defining aesthetics of the 1980s, Memphis design is sometimes considered a flashy style that combines many chaotic patterns and shapes. At one time, Memphis-inspired design, at once more colorful, accessible, and adventurous than design had ever been, was a rejection of minimalism and the supposedly sophisticated taste of art historians.
At a time when minimalist approaches have resulted in a plethora of interfaces that, while intuitive, are overwhelmingly the same, this stance sounds particularly sincere. Therefore, it is not surprising that many web designers turn to the Memphis style to get an explosion of bright personalities that no visitor will forget.
Application of animated images in 3D
Sometimes, things are easier to show than to attach an extensive product description in text format. In this case, 3D animation can be successfully applied. In 2022, 3D effects will become more voluminous, with a desire for futuristic elements.
3D animation will not leave anyone indifferent due to its breathtaking realism. Designing in this format mimics depth’s effect in images, illustrations, and typography. Next year, 3D images will be combined with photos and 2D designs to create realistic drawings. Users will be able to explore objects from all angles.
Web design loves to create a sense of magic – or at least the illusion that content is neatly organized by an invisible hand floating freely in the digital space. The reality, of course, is that websites are built on a strict grid and contain code. This is the reality that designers strive to show in 2022, revealing the essence of layouts with simple borders and frames.
A visible grid has the apparent advantage of distinguishing one section from another. This makes the page easier to browse, allowing more content to be displayed without making the page feel crowded. These simple borders give sites a subtle retro vibe that pairs well with other recurring circa-nineties trends.
Using flaws as unique features
Imperfections no longer look unattractive. On the contrary, they are actively used to draw the user’s attention to one or another component of the page. Beautifully complemented by asymmetry or strikethrough, the image will create an enticing headline or make the overall design more authentic.
It will look good on various sites. For example:
- online magazines or newspapers;
- websites selling clothes and cosmetics;
- information pages on interior decor;
- beauty or fashion industry blogs.
The design will use such a unique technique as an uncentered balance. He will be able to revive the target audience, focus their attention on the site’s most essential elements, and facilitate the perception of visual information. Asymmetry will allow you to use the free space of the site more efficiently and profitably and separate the navigation menu from the rest of the content. The asymmetric design will help express the main message and emotions of the web resource and create a sense of dynamism. This technique is perfect for creating advertising sites where a critical component is an emotional motive.
Thanks to this, sites will be able to attract a large number of visitors since the unusual always attracts attention and creates directed consumer interest. Recognition of a voice command is carried out using voice verification.
Over the years, we’ve seen websites take animation displays to technologically innovative heights. While they have been more commonly used in the first screen and page transitions in the past, we expect more designers to turn to large-scale animation interactions in 2022.
These interactions go beyond scrolling (which can be relatively passive) to encourage more conscious interaction with the page, such as clicking, swiping, and dragging.
The key to this trend is to create a bit of a mystery—for example, the tiny black cube following the cursor on LEQB or the missing navigation on Chiara Luzzana—and the visitor is encouraged to use some form of interaction to find out how the page works. This creates a new experience that makes site users feel like explorers actively clicking on the page to uncover its secrets.
Applying the most minimalistic web design options
Minimalism in the site design implies a large area of free space without unnecessary elements. With the help of well-placed accents, you can control the user’s gaze and lead him to targeted actions. The main goal of the minimalist style in design is to achieve a combination of functionality, convenience, aesthetics, and atmosphere.
Since users spend a lot of time online, getting information quickly and easily becomes essential. Various decorative elements become distracting and annoying factors that cause a decrease in visitor traffic. To avoid this, in 2022, web designers should focus on minimalistic page models.
This is also because smartphones, tablets, or smart watches cannot display the full range of design solutions. This leads to the emergence of an adaptive approach in web design.
Working with layering, shadows, or floating details
Elements with a floating base complemented by soft shades create an illusory 3D image. This method allows you to add more profound and exciting points. They are designed to interest the client and draw his attention to important issues.
Compared to classic 3D, this hike is more simplified. It allows the user to feel the illusion of vast space and get positive emotions from working with the service. It also provides an opportunity to increase the level of interest in the brand and make the product more recognizable.
This tool is still a suitable replacement for pure 3D effects and 3D animations. In 2022, it can be found in the first half of the year, but then there is a very high chance of it being completely excluded from the lists of trends.
Using gradients and highlights
The fashion for color gradients and schemes was pioneered by Instagram back in 2016. Their logo has become iconic and has made a breakthrough in the web design industry. Since then, this approach has not lost its relevance, which allows designers to continue working with color transitions.
The difference in application mainly concerns the color scheme. Thanks to the use of the most minimalistic trends, color gradients appear before us in two formats:
- the most opposite colors on the color circle.
The first method is distinguished by using one color with a smooth transition to white or the lightest shade. This method is suitable for highlighting headings or essential blocks. The second option allows you to divide the page into two fields containing opposite or compared objects.
Also, acid or very bright colors have ceased to be used for this type of design. Most often, preference is given to pastel colors or bright but blurry shades.
Web design is mainly aimed at increasing the functionality of working with sites. This is due to the trends of the time, in which visitors do not have the opportunity to spend hours at a computer or gadget to understand the interface of a particular portal.
Technology development allows applying more sophisticated tools and options for creating sites. Maintaining traffic, ranking, and page performance are essential to keep up with the times.
In 2022, web designers will be more careful in design, as all trends are reduced to the maximum functionality. By following and using web design trends in 2022 to promote and create a site, they will be able to create high-quality projects with flexible design and reliable management.
If you are searching for the right experts for your dev project? We found them! Our Outstaffing services give you access to the best developers and IT experts with rich backgrounds and skills in the latest software technologies. We allow you to focus on your core business, getting the most out of our dedicated employees for your project. https://passion4.tech/outstaffing/
The supply chain in logistics only seems simple at first glance: what could be easier than getting something from point A to point B? There may be dozens of other points between A and B, each connected to a new company, people, and documents. The complexity of today’s supply chains leads to delays, losses, damages, and opportunities for fraud. Not surprisingly, this industry needs a technological transformation involving intrintroducingive digital technologies like blockchain.
What is blockchain technology in supply chain management?
Blockchain technology is mainly related to cryptocurrencies. However, its principles can be helpful in various industries, including supply chain management.
In general, a blockchain is a decentralized network (chain) of blocks that allows transactions to be made, recorded, and secured between multiple parties involved without the need for an intermediary such as a bank. Each new block is linked to the previous one, so it is impossible to change one block without changing the entire chain without the approval of everyone in the network. Cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin, litecoin, and Ethereum are the main currency for transactions.
In supply chain management, instead of crypto coins, supply chain blockchains “tokenize” data associated with transactions, creating unique and easily verifiable tokens for purchase orders, inventory, invoices, etc.
Each participant in the chain has a unique digital signature. It is used to “sign” the tokens that move along the chain. Each transaction step is captured in transfers between participants, providing a built-in checkmark that cannot be falsified as everyone gets their copy of the chain.
What are the benefits of blockchain in supply chain management?
The use of blockchain in supply chain management can increase the security, transparency, and reliability of the supply chain and can also help automate processes while reducing costs and risks.
This allows members to record prices, dates, locations, quality, certifications, and other important information for more productive supply chain management. Blockchain technology can improve supply chain traceability, reduce counterfeit and gray market losses, increase transparency and efficiency, and improve overall supply chain management.
Thus, blockchain in supply chain management can provide traceability, transparency, and traceability benefits.
Security and transparency
Since the information in each blockchain node cannot be lost, changed, or erased if someone wants it, it becomes a reliable way to store data. Unlike storing data on servers, a blockchain-enabled database is hack-resistant because all information is open and stored on multiple machines.
All shippers and carriers, as well as other participants in the supply chain, see the details of each shipment: its route, speed, documents, and any changes made (when, why, and by whom). This increases trust between different companies that have to work together within the same supply chain. Combining blockchain with IoT technologies also eliminates or at least reduces the possibility of smuggling prohibited or dangerous items. Here’s how it works: A truck or ship’s intelligent sensors can weigh and analyze the cargo and send the information to the network.
Reliability of information
The transparency blockchain brings to the global trading industry goes beyond documentation and administrative procedures. It also displays information about the products and their origins to ensure dealers and customers that the products are not spoofed on the way to the shelves or made using illegal child labor. A blockchain-based system can confirm the exclusivity and natural origin of luxury items most likely to be counterfeited.
Proof of proper production becomes even more critical regarding medicines or food. Blockchain makes it easy to determine who is responsible for tainted food or a disease outbreak. Imagine a large retailer importing eggs and chicken from multiple households. Suddenly, consumers report that they contracted salmonellosis after eating eggs purchased from this vendor. Instead of destroying the entire stock, you can find the exact suppliers of contaminated products and eliminate their last addition.
Another way the logistics industry can take advantage of the easily accessible, trusted information provided by blockchain technology is by seeing the history of a vehicle and its performance. For example, when a company needs to buy used trucks, it can get a record of all breakdowns, repairs, and accidents on a particular vehicle.
Smart contracts are one of the most revolutionary effects blockchain has on the supply chain industry. These are sets of actions that are performed after specific requirements are met. For example, a program could send money to a carrier as soon as the shipment arrives at its final destination. Such a solution helps eliminate the need for third-party companies such as banks to speed up and automate processes that typically take longer and can cause human error.
Long and tedious attempts to smooth out conflict situations are a severe problem for most players in the logistics industry. Many companies spend millions of dollars to resolve payment conflicts instead of investing in business development. In most disputes, companies need outside help to reach an agreement. With blockchain, supply chain management can save time and resources by facilitating dispute resolution.
The introduction of blockchain into the supply chain also makes it easy to find suitable routes and empty spaces in vehicles. According to the American Institute for Transportation Research, 20% of trucks are open for all distances. This means a loss in industry revenue, which can be avoided through better communication and automation of obtaining information about truck loading.
Examples of using blockchain in other industries
Finance and international payments
The use of blockchain technology for cross-border transfers is one of the most illustrative examples of the application of this technology. The active development, implementation, and successful use of payment networks and protocols such as Stellar, Ripple, and IBM Blockchain World Wire shows how well blockchain fits into the financial industry.
Blockchain platforms allow international transactions to be carried out almost instantly and with low commissions due to the absence of the need for participants to contact any intermediaries, such as banks.
Banks and other financial institutions can also increase the efficiency of their internal work by moving to decentralized systems within the bank between its various divisions and independent counterparties, as this will help speed up payments and increase trust between participants. In addition, blockchain systems of this kind can be used not only for external or internal transactions but also as part of a reliable workflow.
Billing and payment automation
Blockchain-based solutions allow the implementation of intelligent contacts with various scenarios that will enable you to automate the issuance and payment of invoices when specified conditions occur.
IBM has developed a web. The trade blockchain platform allows you to:
- create trade orders
- manage all stages of the trading process,
- establish the terms of calculation and payment,
- manage banking products.
The platform is fully automated, which significantly speeds up the entire process from order to payment.
Blockchain technology has opened up a vast niche of cryptocurrency exchanges – digital platforms for buying, selling, exchanging, and storing cryptocurrencies. Compared to traditional businesses, crypto exchanges feature lower entry levels, high transaction processing speed, and relatively low fees. The most popular crypto exchanges include Binance, Coinbase, OKEx, Huobi, and others.
Blockchain technology also made it possible to develop investment platforms that allow users to invest in cryptocurrencies and various tokenized assets. Using cryptocurrencies or bank cards, users can replenish the wallet of the RoobeeWallet platform and purchase tokenized assets, which will also be stored on this wallet.
Blockchain features such as ensuring the immutability of information, making it possible to trace data changes and their safety, make this technology suitable for storing, managing, and exchanging patients’ electronic medical records.
The Advice platform uses the Stellar protocol and artificial intelligence to collect patient medical data and analyze it to determine the most effective service delivery methods.
Also, blockchain solutions can be used to store and analyze research data. IBM is working on the MiPasa project, which helps fight the COVID-19 coronavirus. The answer is designed to collect medical, scientific, and research data from various sources, synchronize them and identify shortcomings and differences to create a single knowledge base for all participants.
The production and distribution of counterfeit medicines are one of the biggest public health problems. Introducing blockchain solutions in the supply chain will significantly reduce the risks associated with drug fraud.
Chinese courier company SF Express was using blockchain technology to track the delivery of medicines during the COVID-19 pandemic. Their solution was able to track, verify and log every transaction in the logistics process, as well as determine the priority level of each order. By combining blockchain technology and Big Data, the company created a traceable logistics network that could prioritize the delivery of goods and minimize the risk of fraud or illegal products entering the supply chain.
Internet of Things (IoT)
Intelligent medical devices are constantly helping doctors by collecting data on the condition of patients in real-time: information about the heartbeat, oxygen levels, body temperature, and other indicators. They are used in sports medicine, the study of internal organs, remote monitoring of patients’ health, etc. Storing such critical data in the blockchain will increase their safety and reliability. Blockchain solutions will also create a single transparent database that participants can access.
The Tackle device helps track women’s fertility. Data about the patient’s condition during the examination is transmitted to the mobile application and recorded on the blockchain provided by Ubirch, which specializes in blockchain solutions for IoT devices.
Blockchain technology has great potential to improve the efficiency of electricity service providers.
LO3 Energy has developed the Pando platform, a marketplace for energy suppliers. The solution allows users flexible trading: suppliers can independently form a marketplace, allowing consumers to purchase energy from local renewable sources. The platform will enable suppliers to analyze the market through reports on sales, buyers, trade dynamics, and others.
Consumers can access an application that allows them to track the statistics of their energy consumption.
Encouragement of energy saving
Blockchain technology and tokens created on its basis help the development of various loyalty programs, the purpose of which may be to increase energy savings.
One such program is the EnergiMine project. The company trades energy on behalf of large European enterprises and uses blockchain to decentralize energy markets and create the EnergiToken platform that encourages energy conservation. Through various energy-saving actions, such as choosing greener transportation or purchasing energy-saving devices, users can earn rewards in ETK tokens, which they can then use to, for example, pay electricity bills, buy energy-efficient appliances, or pay for public transport.
Thanks to the blockchain, platforms are being created that predict the outcome of sports competitions and any event: natural disasters, state elections, and auctions. The participant makes a bet and purchases intra-platform coins or shares. He gets a win or a loss, depending on the event’s outcome.
The leader in forecasting is Gnosis. It is a decentralized and open-source prediction platform. The site is distinguished by honesty and transparency, fraudulent actions with manipulating results, decreased bet amounts, and other excluded problems.
Another critical project is Augur. This is a well-known Ethereum-based platform with its REP token. Each visitor to the forum can create a forecasting market (predictions) and not only take part in it but also profit from other users.
Distribution of multimedia files
The legal distribution of multimedia files, the fight against piracy, and copyright protection are closely related. Blockchain system allows you to solve problems:
- Increasing payment methods for listening to or viewing media files.
- Reducing the risk of illegally downloading and copying documents.
- Transparent system for recording data about the target audience.
The PledgeMusic platform introduced a project to eliminate the problem of copyright infringement, payment, and audience verification. Authors upload their files, and metadata is stored in the block—users wishing to download content view the materials through the registry. Payment for listening or viewing is carried out in real-time.
iTunes is a blockchain startup that offers a platform for sharing data between users. The problem of piracy is excluded: platform participants exchange works of their composition. Payment is made in bitcoins.
The use and value of any technological innovation in any industry will grow in line with the growth in the number of companies using it. The more players in the logistics market implement blockchain technology, the closer the industry becomes to a transparent and reliable ecosystem. Blockchain technology has several characteristics that can be useful for almost any industry.
A bit of history
Over the past few years, there has been active talk about the fact that the modern form of the Internet is outdated. There are more and more rumors about the third generation of the Internet. Increasingly, you can hear that the era of Web 3.0 is coming. What is it, and what changes does Web 3.0 bring with it? Let’s try to cover it in this article.
To understand what Web 3.0 is, it seems logical to start by talking about what Web 1.0 and Web 2.0 are.
The period from 1991 to 2004 is called the period of the Internet Web 1.0. But this name appeared only after the concept of Web 2.0 arose, and before that, the Internet was called the World Wide Web.
What was Web 1.0
It is also called the Read Only Internet (“read-only”).
In the 1990s, most of the Internet was “read-only.” The average consumer could search and read information using a browser such as Netscape or Internet Explorer.
This early commercial Internet, or Web 1.0, was to present content and products to consumers, as in a catalog.
It was a collection of static sites with much information and no interactive content. The site owners created, stored, and published the report.
Users read news and articles; in a word, they consume the information offered but cannot interact with it and create it. There was no authorization, no logins, and no editing options.
The advent of Web 2.0 – social network (“read-write”)
In September 2005, Tim O’Reilly’s article “What is Web 2.0” was published, where for the first time, there was talk of a new Internet Web 2.0 as opposed to the old Web 1.0.
The second iteration of the Internet, or Web 2.0, gave birth to the ability to read, write, and publish. Blogger and LiveJournal ushered in an era of platforms where consumers could upload content (including video and audio), sell products, and build communities. Social networking sites soon followed, with Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube becoming the dominant players. Thus, Web 2.0 brought us more interesting interfaces and opened the way to interactive content.
A significant difference between Web 2.0 and its predecessor, Web 1.0, was the emergence of social networks, thanks to which web admins, site developers, and users could create content. It became possible to create, and publish posts, photos, and videos, write comments, quickly find an audience, make valuable contacts, and much more.
Web 2.0 problems
However, in addition to the benefits that users received with the advent of Web 2.0, the problems and disadvantages of such an Internet gradually began to appear:
- All content that a user publishes on a particular server (posts, photos, videos, etc.) ultimately belongs to the author and the server’s owner. The owner can do anything with the content, including removing or blocking it at any time, because it does not comply or no longer complies with the company’s editorial policy.
- In exchange for the opportunity to use Web 2.0 resources, users began to create accounts on websites, leaving their data there. This data began to be massively accumulated on the servers of various IT giants.
Users’ personal information:
- Phone numbers
- Bank card numbers
- Search queries
Everything that users say or do ends up in the hands of companies that make a lot of money selling this data to various advertising agencies.
- Various hacks
- Transfer of confidential information to third parties
- Use of user data for personal gain
Many people believe that the use of various services is free. Owner companies say this without hesitation.
But this is not true. Users pay not with their usual currency but with their data and the content they publish.
Consolidated market share in this era was distributed among a few large tech giants who now wield tremendous power.
At some point, it became apparent that Web 2.0 needed an upgrade and that the Internet required to become more private and human.
And so, in 2014, Gavin Wood, co-founder of Ethereum and founder of Polkadot, in his article, outlined Web 3.0 as a decentralized network that will be built based on the blockchain.
Indeed, the fundamental difference between Web 3.0 and Web 2.0 is decentralization at all levels.
Web 3.0 – Semantic Web (Read-Write-Execute)
Since 2020, it has become apparent that the “Web 3.0” locomotive has begun its movement and cannot be stopped.
Web 3.0 tools such as:
- Blockchain technologies. Blockchain is a ledger of decentralized data that can be exchanged securely. Blockchain technology allows a collective group of selected participants to exchange data.
- Non-fungible tokens (NFTs) are tokens stored on a blockchain with a cryptographic hash that makes the token unique.
- Decentralized Finance (DeFi) is a new Web 3.0 use case that uses a decentralized blockchain as the basis for providing financial services outside of the traditional centralized banking infrastructure.
- Cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin are Web 3.0 applications creating a new world of currency that seeks to be separate from the historical world of fiat currency.
- Decentralized application. Decentralized applications (dApps) are blockchain-based applications that use smart contracts to provide services in a programmatic manner registered in an immutable ledger.
- Cross-chain bridges. There are many blockchains in the Web 3.0 world, and providing some degree of interoperability between them is the realm of blockchain bridging.
- DAOs have the potential to become Web 3.0 service providers, providing some structure and governance in a decentralized approach.
- The Metaverse (derived from the Greek prefix μετά- – “between, after, though,” and the word “universe”) is a permanent virtual space in which people can interact with each other and with digital objects through their avatars, using virtual technologies—reality (Wikipedia).
There are already:
- Decentralized organizations
- Decentralized applications
- Decentralized services that store and process data
In 2021, over a hundred million dollars were invested by various companies in Web 3.0. More than 34 thousand developers have joined his projects.
At the heart of the development of the new Internet are:
- Artificial intelligence
- Machine learning
- Semantic Web
The ultimate goal of the Semantic Web is to create more knowledgeable, connected, and accessible websites.
Intelligent home systems using cellular networks and the Internet of Things (IoT) are examples of how Web 3.0 is currently driving innovation. When creating Web 3.0, artificial intelligence (AI), the semantic web, and universal characteristics will be considered.
Web 3.0 is still being developed and defined, so no canonical, generally accepted definition exists. However, Web 3.0 will emphasize decentralized applications and extensively use blockchain-based technologies. Web 3.0 will also use machine learning and artificial intelligence (AI) to help empower more innovative and responsive applications.
Another aspect of the emerging definition of Web 3.0 is the semantic web concept. Among those who advocated the integration of semantic technology into the Web was the Web’s creator, Tim Berners-Lee.
It has taken over ten years to move from the original Web, Web 1.0, to Web 2.0, and it is expected to take the same amount of time, if not longer, to implement and change the Web with Web 3.0 fully.
What is next for Web 3.0?
The Internet, which no longer belongs to large corporations but is the property of users
It will be a distributed database stored on particular nodes (nodes) and the users’ devices. At the same time, everyone can own and manage nodes.
Users are the primary content owners.
No one else can block or delete any site, service, or content because a copy will be stored by thousands of users on thousands of devices.
Internet without restrictions
Users will no longer be blocked on some basis, for example, civil, when citizens of a particular country are prohibited from services of any servers. And also, with Web 3.0, each user will have the opportunity to publish absolutely any content, including introducing various innovations that are often not allowed in Web 2.0 by dominant forces due to fear of competition.
The DAO will take over the role of moderation.
Decentralized autonomous organizations do not have a governing body or board of directors. There are users with the right to vote. It is the DAO that, by voting, will decide on issues of editorial policy and determine the tariff scale, rewards, punishments, etc.
Anonymity and confidentiality
Users will have complete control over their data, which will be encrypted, and information will only be transferred with permission (in the form of a signature in the wallet, like Ethereum). IT giants will no longer be able to receive and dispose of user data uncontrollably. Thanks to the updated Identity, the user can surf the pages, download something, buy or sell something, and no one can trace his real Identity.
Few people are pleased when they go on the Internet, and various kinds of advertising begin to fall on you, as if from a cornucopia. In Web 3.0, the information will be adapted to a specific user, which means that the user will be offered only those advertisements that correspond to his interests and needs, and only after his permission. The modern Brave browser, for example, blocks website ads by default. And if the user agrees to view it, he receives BAT tokens, which can then be exchanged for real money.
Web 3.0 applications will be able to adapt to each user individually
They will work on smartphones, cars, TVs, and sensors. Web 3.0 will go far beyond the Internet and completely penetrate our natural world.
Tokenization of all data and content
All user data and content will be unique and have proven ownership. Imagine that even in blockchain games, it is the user who owns their game items on their wallets, not the creator of the game, and can move them to any other games or even sell them on any marketplace.
Web 3.0 will revolutionize the financial system, how companies work and how people interact.
This is the transfer of power into the hands of people, not banks and centralized platforms. Users will be able to transfer their assets anywhere in the world without intermediaries, and with the consent of third-party organizations, they will receive more financial freedom. If Web 2.0 earns mainly large corporations at the expense of users, then Web 3.0 provides excellent opportunities for users to make money, opening up alternatives to traditional financial services.
It is unclear whether Web 3.0 will be a separate blockchain or several blockchains and how they interact. But there are already companies dealing with this issue, for example, Polkadot and Cosmos.
In a sense, Web 3.0 is a return to its original Web, where “publishing something does not require permission from a central authority.” There is no central control node, which means there is no single point of failure and “automatic destruction”!
Web 4.0 – Mobile Internet
Augmented reality and big data will undoubtedly play a significant role in the next stage of web technology development. This is supposed to be an era in which every person will have a digital alter ego and talk more and more through new interfaces such as intelligent machines. There is also a somewhat dystopian vision of the Internet in the future, with more control over information that will affect the digital world and the reality around us.
Mobile Internet is already under development, and there is no clear understanding of what this will entail. Platform 4.0 is often referred to as the symbiotic network. The symbiotic web fantasy is the contact between humans and computers in symbiosis.
The next step is not a different but an alternative version of what we already have. We wanted to match its mobile environment. Mobile Internet connects all systems in the physical and virtual worlds in real-time.
The Web would be analogous to the human brain, implying a vast network of brilliant communications. Although there is no exact information about Web 4.0 and its technologies, it is clear that the Internet is moving towards using artificial intelligence to become an intelligent network.
The Web is a mobile world in which people, natural structures, and abstract objects coexist harmoniously, creating meaning. Weber and Rech link Web 4.0 to the theory of virtual reality, arguing that the development of this technology will enrich the physical world with digital knowledge and media content.
Web 5.0 – intellectual/emotional (symbiotic) web
In short, the Internet of Things (IoT) means that everything in your life means everything around you can talk to each other about you, in front of you, behind your back, and without care or empathy. With a focus on selling, buying, and influencing you.
It would be fun to wake up to a kitten-shaped robot, but Web 5.0 has gone beyond that.
The advent of intelligent devices that predict your needs based on your habits without including many clues portends what is to come with the smart grid. Symbiotic web programs can interpret evidence at a more complex level, both emotionally and intellectually.
This is the Internet – in full coexistence with everyday life, working without thinking and interacting seamlessly with what we do.
Using digital realities, computers can be turned into assistant robots. The Internet of Things will be able to connect all household appliances to the Internet. Thanks to the implantation of chips in the human brain, it is assumed that brilliant interaction can occur between machines and people. Web 4.0 advertising and misinformation will tell us that only you can “see it” and make it happen.
Why talk to your partner when you can think about him? People can connect to the Internet, their homes, their cars, their children, their careers, and so on, using their thoughts and feelings. There will be no need for joysticks or game consoles. Just relax and mentally immerse yourself in the video game.
We are at the beginning of the birth of something significant and extensive. Now is the time to get involved in the Web 3.0 decentralization process and understand this to transition into the Web 5.0 future smoothly.
If a company stores accounting information, customer base, employee profiles, or corporate secrets, then it is essential that these data do not fall into the wrong hands; that is, they are protected. Information security deals with data protection.
What is information security?
Information security is a variety of measures to protect information from unauthorized persons. In the pre-digital era, people locked essential documents in safes, hired security guards, and encrypted their messages on paper to protect data.
Information security protects systems from penetration and attacks. This includes not only hacking: these are DDoS attacks, resulting from which the site server can “lie down,” data leakage, and much more. There are a lot more attackers than you think. And no one wants their service to fail and the data to be available to everyone. This is what information security is for.
Companies have another reason: they are legally responsible for leaking confidential user data. So for them, security measures are also a way to avoid legal problems and loss of customer confidence.
Without information security measures, anyone could gain access to confidential information or hack into any site or system. Computer space would become virtually unusable.
What is information security responsible for?
It is responsible for three things: confidentiality, integrity, and availability of information. The concept of information security they are called the principles of information security.
- Confidentiality means that only those with the right to access the information have access. For example, only you know your email password, and only you can read your emails. Confidentiality will be violated if someone knows the password or gains access to the mailbox.
- Integrity means that the information is stored entirely and is not changed without the owner’s knowledge. For example, letters are stored in your email. If an attacker deletes some or changes the text of individual letters, then this will violate the integrity.
- Accessibility means that whoever has the right to access information can get it. For example, you can access your email at any time. If hackers attack the servers, the mail will be inaccessible, breaking the availability.
Three principles of information security
Information security is responsible for three things: availability, confidentiality, and data integrity. Now we will tell you what this means.
This means that information can be accessed by those with the right to do so. For example, a user can log into their account and see everything. The customer can go to the catalog and look at the products. An employee can access the internal database for his access level. And if an attack is made on the system and it stops working, availability sometimes drops to a complete failure.
The second principle is confidentiality. It means that the information must be protected from people who do not have the right to view it. That is, a stranger will not be able to enter the same user account. Without registration, you can not comment on something on the site; without a personal statement – you pay for the order. A person who does not work for a company cannot access its internal network and look at confidential data there. If the system is hacked, confidentiality is violated.
Integrity means that the information in question is intact, exists in its entirety, and is not changed without the knowledge of its owners. An outsider cannot edit a comment – only the author or sometimes a moderator. The information in the database changes only at the request of those with access. And your account will not receive letters written on your behalf without your knowledge. When a system is hacked, the integrity can again be violated: information can be modified, damaged, or erased.
What data is protected by the information security
Personal data is information that is associated with some people. This is the full name, phone number, residence address, email, and more. According to Russian laws, this data must be protected from unauthorized access. Therefore, companies ask permission to process personal data if you register on websites or order some services. They are required to do so. And then – to store this information so that strangers do not get access to it.
You have probably heard stories about the violation of the confidentiality of this data. For example, scammers can call bank customers, obtaining their numbers from merged databases. Here is an example of what insufficient information security can lead to.
Another category of information is those that constitute a secret: state, commercial, professional and official.
State secrets include information that is important for the country’s security and are classified as strictly as possible. A trade secret is a data critical to a company’s regular operation: if disclosed, the organization may lose money or a competitive advantage. At the same time, the company does not have the right to classify some information: the names of the owners, working conditions, etc.
Separately, there are professional and official secrets. A professional secret is, for example, a medical one: the patient’s medical history should not be disclosed to strangers or data on his condition. And also – a lawyer, a notary, and some others. And an official secret is some information that belongs to certain services, for example, tax.
All this information must be protected: its leakage or damage can cause serious problems.
Information that is known to everyone still needs to be accessible and consistent. Therefore, it should also be protected. Otherwise, anyone can change the price of goods in an online store and expose buyers to this. Or “drop” the site so that no one can enter it.
What threats does information security protect against?
Security threats are divided into two categories: internal and external.
These are threats that come from within the system. Most often, we are talking about data leakage or data damage. For example, someone bribed an employee, and he stole data that is a trade secret. The second option – an authorized user turned out to be an attacker.
Another internal threat is the risk of a stale error, resulting in confidential information being in the public domain or damaged. For example, a part of the database turned out to be in the public domain, or the user inadvertently damaged the files. This has already happened in history. And such cases mustn’t arise: the client could not disrupt the system even by accident, and the information remained protected.
This includes threats that come from outside, and they can be much more diverse. This is, for example, an attempt to hack the system through a found vulnerability: an attacker penetrates the network to steal or damage information. Or a DDoS attack, when many requests from different addresses come to a web address, the server fails, and the site stops working.
This also includes the activities of computer viruses: they can seriously harm the system’s operation. The actions of such malicious programs can be very diverse: from sending spam on behalf of a hacked address to completely blocking the system and damaging files.
Other external security threats include force majeure and accidents. For example, a data warehouse was damaged due to an accident or fire. Such risks also need to be foreseen.
Data protection trends for 2022
Widespread use of multi-factor authentication
In 2022, more companies will be using multi-factor authentication as additional protection against data leaks and malicious attacks. Such authentication involves using two or more different factors to allow users to access secure data, forcing people to use more than one device to prove their identity. An example in action is a one-time passcode sent to two or more devices.
New modifications of encryption software
In 2021, ransomware attacks, on average, cost the world more than the moderate damage from all types of data breaches, reaching $4.44 million. Ransomware is one of the most common data security threats in any organization, and this threat continues to evolve as a top information security trend in 2022. Ransomware attacks steal data from companies and organizations, inflicting severe financial blows on them and forcing them to bear the additional cost of recovering from these attacks.
New solutions for remote work
To ensure the continuity of business operations, many companies have rushed and had to relax several security measures (or even abandon some of them altogether), creating new levels of vulnerabilities and risks.
But remote work is not going anywhere after the pandemic. Organizations will need to assess their current security infrastructure for unaddressed weaknesses during the sudden move to remote work and start thinking about a long-term security strategy.
A leap in the development of artificial intelligence (AI)
Artificial intelligence and machine learning are becoming more sophisticated and powerful, and companies will continue to improve these technologies in 2022 as part of their security infrastructure. AI is increasingly being used to create automated security systems that replace humans, allowing vast amounts of risk data to be analyzed much faster. This benefits large companies dealing with enormous amounts of data and small or medium-sized companies whose security teams may be under-resourced.
Criminal networks are taking advantage of AI to automate and improve their attacks. However, organizations should take advantage of AI: those companies that suffered a data breach but fully deployed AI technology saved an average of $3.58 million in 10M 2021.
Increasing attacks on cloud services
While cloud services offer many benefits, such as scalability, efficiency, and lower costs, they are still a prime target for attackers. Organizations should assess the security implications associated with the cloud and identify any vulnerabilities in their current infrastructure. For example, misconfigured cloud infrastructure settings were the leading cause of data breaches in 2020, with an average loss of $4.41 million. In addition, cloud migration increased the average data breach cost by $267,469.
Tightening data privacy requirements
With high-profile cyber-attacks exposing millions of personal information records, concerns about data privacy, governance, and security have skyrocketed. In 2022, the importance of data privacy issues will increase dramatically, becoming not just one of the components of security but a separate area. Regulatory compliance requirements will continue to tighten in 2022, and organizations will need to focus on their data privacy efforts in the future.
Data privacy impacts virtually every aspect of an organization’s operations, from the development and implementation of corporate strategy to security compliance and human resource management. Companies should consider introducing a dedicated data protection officer, securing and destroying records, implementing role-based access control, encryption in transit, and network segmentation to enhance their data privacy.
The need for information security specialists
Finding well-trained cybersecurity professionals has been challenging in all industries, but the ongoing shift to remote work creates a greater need for such professionals. Organizations will need to seek out well-trained security professionals and experts to help improve the security of their corporate networks.
While it may take some time to adequately staff your organization with the required security experts, implementing enterprise-wide training can provide a buffer for attacks in the interim. Learning must be continuous, and companies must continuously measure its effectiveness.
Phishing attacks are even more problematic due to the widespread use of remote work, and attackers target people connecting to their corporate network from home because they are the easiest targets. To combat this, companies should review their user identity and security management strategy to ensure that only authorized users (such as their employees) have the appropriate level of access to only the resources they need at the right time. Organizations must carefully evaluate their current infrastructure to align it with this goal and implement it company-wide.
Development of insider threats
In late 2021 and 2022, companies will pay more attention to the risk of insider threats and data theft from their employees. Although it is sometimes hard to believe, the data does not lie – 95% of all data leakage incidents occurred due to human error or intentional or accidental breach of information security. Insider threats need to be taken seriously and viewed as a real risk by security leaders. Challenging questions about whether organizations have the proper tools to detect and stop them will need to be asked.
Increased need for Chief Security Officers (CSOs)
While the need for increased security across industries is well known, only 11% of companies report high confidence in managing or responding to cyber attacks. Security risk management is still evolving, so while this data isn’t surprising, these questions should become necessary for companies. One of the more common barriers is the lack of alignment between security operations and business strategy.
To combat this, CSOs need to become more vigilant in identifying risks in the context of business objectives and be able to explain why they matter to company leaders. By pinpointing these risks and articulating how they plan to mitigate them (and at what cost), CSOs can create a shared understanding of security issues among company management that can significantly strengthen information security initiatives across the board.
The problem of data security is highly relevant to both ordinary users and companies. The qualifications of cybercriminals are constantly growing. The number of privacy thefts will increase, and to minimize the risks, users and corporations must not only use existing security methods but also continuously implement advanced protection technologies.
Introduction – a little history
For the first time, outstaffing in its form began to be used in America and other developed countries in the 60s of the twentieth century. This service was most widespread only in the 90s, which happened due to the introduction of new laws relating to personnel management. Following the new requirements, American small and medium-sized businesses were forced to devote a lot of time to paperwork, which was unprofitable.
Other sources suggest that outstaffing originated in Japan. And this version also has the right to exist since objective data confirm it: in the Land of the Rising Sun, only a third of the total number of employees work in the state; the rest work outside it (at the same time, they are socially protected, they are accrued seniority, and so on).
The active introduction of these personnel laws began in the early 1980s and continued until the 2000s. Companies were faced with a choice: to spend a lot of time and resources to comply with all the new requirements and norms or to look for other solutions to the current problem. This led to the emergence of outstaffing as a recent personnel phenomenon.
Outstaffing – what is it in simple words?
Outstaffing is the re-registration of employees to the staff of another company, as a result of which the workers continue to work at the old workplace and perform their previous functions. Still, the role and responsibilities of the employer are officially transferred to a third-party outstaffing company.
In other words, being a high management technology, outstaffing is a form of relationship between the employer and his employees, in which the employer transfers, formally registering, his employees to the staff of another outstaffing company, concluding an outstaffing agreement with it. At the same time, employees continue to work in the territory of the former employer and perform all of their former functions as before.
However, the official employer on paper is now an outstaffing company that has registered employees with its company under an employment contract. Currently, it performs all the functions of an employer: maintains personnel records of employees, monitors workers’ documents, calculates taxes, pays wages, interacts with government agencies, etc.
The meaning of outstaffing is simple: a company (usually a large one) wants to focus on its core business and not be distracted by various HR issues and agrees with an intermediary organization that provides it with staff. The latter is legally their employer and resolves all matters related to the selection, salary, and registration of subordinates. She also maintains all documentation (accounting and personnel).
At the same time, employees entirely work in the customer’s company but are on the staff of the provider company. Outstaffing is mainly used by companies with at least 100 employees (such giants as Mail.ru, Yandex, and MTS also work with Rubrain). The service is also popular among Western startups who want to quickly get the specific experts they need for development, which are difficult to find in any other way. Most often, for the state, there are deduced:
- IT specialists.
The intermediary takes on the functions of paying wages, paying taxes, and enforcing labor laws (hiring, sick leave, dismissal, and so on). At the same time, employees are engaged in projects for the customer company during all their working hours. The staff is also under the direct control of its managers, which is one of the main differences between such a service and outsourcing.
People work in precisely the same way as full-time employees. They perform their usual duties, often even in the office of the client company. But without unnecessary legal complications and the risk of costs. If the employee does not fit, the outstaffer changes him for free, so there is no need to fire anyone.
When is outstaffing appropriate?
It would be advisable to apply the removal of employees from the state in situations where the legality of the employee’s employment and the impossibility of expanding the company’s staff come into conflict. Such problems may arise as a result of factors such as:
- The need to save the salary fund, tax spending, thoughtful provision of social packages;
- the employer cannot take full responsibility for the financial, accounting, and documentary services of their personnel;
- the desire to reduce the burden on office work and accounting;
- labor migrants are the main labor force, but there is no way to track the documentary side of their official registration;
- it is necessary to relieve oneself of responsibility to one’s personnel and inspection state bodies;
- unwillingness to staff registration of seasonal workers or those undergoing a probationary period;
- the desire to employ a specialist from another region without opening a particular representative office (branch);
- the need to increase the number of employees, but the impossibility of staff growth due to the limits of the simplified tax regime (STS).
Types of outstaffing
All outstaffing contracts are bound by validity periods. They can be:
- It is necessary, first of all, to reduce the number of people in the state. Legally, people get a job in another company; in fact, they remain in the same place. Or a company is looking for a rare specialist for a permanent position but finds him only through outstaffing employees and agrees.
- They are needed in companies with significant seasonal load changes and changing market conditions. The contract is temporary, usually for 1-3 months.
- They are needed to complete one specific project or task. After the project is closed, the specialists return to the outstaffing organization and are assigned other company tasks. The contract specifies the conditions for completion (documented final product or the moment of its launch)
Pros of outstaffing
Outstaffing allows you to save resources on staff search – the outstaffing company will do it instead of you. This service will also allow you, as a business owner, to extend the probationary period for new employees, which makes it possible to check their professional qualities in more detail.
Are you familiar with the situation when the labor inspectorate finds any violations? If you have experienced similar problems, then you probably know that the responsibility lies with the employee and the management. But even minor violations lead to significant fines imposed on the legal entity.
Using this service, you get absolute protection during inspections by regulatory authorities because you do not have employees who have fallen under the outstaffing procedure. Even communication with controlling assessments becomes the responsibility of the contracting company. You will no longer be bothered by various checks and can fully devote yourself to the main processes that bring you profit.
You ultimately get rid of obligations under labor relations with the personnel. If a conflict situation or a labor dispute with an employee arises, the outstaffing company deals with its solution. All risks associated with employees and proceedings for work-related injuries and accidents, including death, are shifted to the outstaffer as a legally registered employer.
Does your company employ foreign employees, and do you spend a lot of time on proceedings with the migration service? We will help you solve all these issues!
The outstaffing company takes care of all the problems with the migration service and the official registration of foreign citizens by the law. Your skilled workers from abroad will be able to work in the same place, and you, as a business owner, will forever get rid of communication with migration service inspectors.
Do you still maintain a large HR staff, and the accounting department often does not have time to cope with many personnel? We have a solution for you.
Reducing the number of employees in the state by order of magnitude will lessen the burden on your accounting department. After all, the outstaffing company assumes the following obligations:
- Selection, registration, accounting, and dismissal of employees.
- Calculation and payment of wages.
- Registration of benefits, travel and sick leave, and vacation planning.
You can also reduce the personnel department staff or transfer the entire department to the team of the outstaffing company.
Outstaffing will allow you to maintain the status of a small business and minimize taxes while increasing the number of employed employees several times. After all, the more employees officially registered in your company, the more taxes you do not need. In addition, with a formally small staff and low personnel costs, you will increase financial performance per worker, thereby increasing investor interest in your company.
Cons of outstaffing
Despite all its advantages, outstaffing still has some risks. Luckily, there aren’t many of them.
The most critical issue that needs to be resolved immediately after the outstaffing procedure is communication and coherence of interaction between the customer company and the provider. And suppose a communication system is not established between the management of the customer company and the outstaffer. In that case, the staff may not promptly receive instructions and recommendations on work. This can cause some delays, and as you know, time is money.
Another risk associated with employees outside the company’s staff is the negligent attitude of employees to the tasks performed. In addition, the division into full-time and outstaffing employees can negatively affect the quality of the work performed. Out-of-staff workers may lose motivation due to the lack of benefits and indulgences that permanent staff have.
Why do companies use outstaffing?
To begin with, let’s pay attention to what services are often taken out for outstaffing:
- Administrative Staff
- Finance specialist middle level
- IT specialist
Although, in general, outstaffing applies to any field of work, both physical and mental tasks.
And they turn to this method on the following grounds:
- Hiring new employees for some positions necessarily implies the passage of a probationary period to prove the declared level of professionalism in work. Not every leader wants to deal with this.
- When a firm plans to expand, it may need employees in other regions or countries before opening branches. A convenient solution is to use outstaffing.
- One of the main reasons is it’s profitable. The entrepreneur saves on wages (although not always), workplace arrangements, tax calculations, and other points.
- Outstaffing is used as an opportunity to reduce staff without losing the best professional team.
- If outstaffing is not regulated by the state, entrepreneurs avoid many difficulties with inspection services regarding the organization of personnel work.
How do outstaffing services affect the competitiveness of companies?
By transferring employees’ salaries under an outstaffing agreement as part of the remuneration for agency services, production costs are reduced, and the tax base is reduced.
The investment attractiveness of the business increases as the share of profits in terms of the number of own personnel of the company-consumer of outstaffing services grows.
The costs for the work of the personnel service are reduced because the employees of the outstaffing company are engaged in the selection, registration, and maintenance of personnel records management.
The ability to legally use the simplified taxation system with the disposal of the state exceeding the limits dictated by the tax laws.
Freelancers do not need time to adapt and learn because we are talking about the same people in the same workplaces.
If your company is tasked with increasing business profitability, reducing personnel costs, and increasing productivity, use professional outstaffing services. When choosing a provider, pay attention to the company’s experience in the market and the work experience of specific specialists assigned to the project for your organization; read the reviews of those who have already used outstaffing.
For companies ordering outstaffing services, this form of cooperation can be an effective solution to increase the attractiveness of companies to various investors. This is due to a significant reduction in costs associated with staff training, hiring, accounting, and paperwork.
Thanks to such savings, it is possible to significantly reduce costs, significantly improving the company’s financial performance. This will make it more likely to attract investments, allowing the company to stimulate its development and further growth.
Advantages and disadvantages of outstaffing for an employee
Pros for the employee
Official employment with all the issues accompanying this concept is assessed as a definite plus.
The service provider, by concluding an employment contract, legally becomes an employer that provides:
- labor and social guarantees;
- stable salary payment;
- payment of taxes and contributions to funds;
- order in the documentation (including tracking permits and migration documents).
Cons of outstaffing for an employee
- A bad outstaffer can develop a variety of schemes to get rich at employees’ expense: non-payment of taxes, withholding salaries for allegedly violated clauses of the contract, and so on.
- “Leased” employees are often deprived of certain benefits the former employer provides for established positions. Many people note the impossibility of career growth and a small salary.
- Frequent job changes and the need to get used to new conditions and changing functionality. In general, the lack of the notorious “confidence in the future” leads to a loss of motivation.
Outstaffing has become an excellent form of management that helps cope with difficulties during a crisis. Outstaffing helps reduce the company’s expenses and optimize its income, affecting the favorable formation of corporate relationships.