Confessions of a Web3 Developer

Nov 18, 2023

Dev Corner

Who am I?

I am known as Ninja Dev and am the creator of Quick Intel. I have worked in tech for over 15 years (my whole life) in the Web2 world. I discovered crypto in 2017, as an investor, and only moved into developing in Web3 back in 2020. I'm going to go through a few things so new developers can learn from them. Share some insights, and lessons learned I’ve encountered while working in this space.

Let's take a ride!

Moving from Web2 → Web3?

As I began my journey of working in Web3, I was under the impression this was a whole new world. But after some research, much about everything from the Web2 world translates to Web3, just slight differences in languages that you learn (Solidity, WASM, etc.). Great, that means building in Web3 should be smooth, what next?

Building in Web3 is not as easy as it seems. You still have to get experience, because what you built or have done in Web2 does not equal what can be done in Web3.


So how do you get experience? Well, the first way is to just start building and writing smart contracts on your own, based on various guides and documentation that are out there. Lots of great material, but the ultimate experience comes from working on some lower-level projects to vet that you can build stuff, and work your way to building bigger things!

Now, working on multiple projects in Web3 is sometimes frowned upon in the space, but it should not be so long as nothing malicious was done, nor harm to users of course.

In the traditional world, you work on a MULTITUDE of jobs, projects, etc. to build your experience. The downside to Web3 is many times all this is tied to investors and user funds.

With this, it is important to get that experience but ensure you keep users in mind before making any transitions.

Lessons Learned

As I dove into the Web3 world, I found a few jobs building some smart contracts and tools for “developers”. I quote this because many people in the Web3 space refer to themselves as developers, no matter their actual role.
As you gain experience, it is crucial that make efforts to vet out potential scams and malicious people. Although this is hard and you can never control what others do, ensuring you’ve done your due diligence so that you are working with honest and trustworthy people is the best way to get that experience, because everything lives on the blockchain forever.

Could I have done things better or with more thought? Yes, always. There are always ways something that could or couldn’t have been done better in hindsight. But ultimately it's a failure if you didn’t learn from it.

As long as you do your best to filter out bad actors and don’t continue to work with bad actors in the event someone does do something shady, you will be ok!

New Project

When you finally decide to launch your very own project, be sure to give it lots of thought, and strategy. The pro to blockchain is it allows anyone to build anything. The con is, that the blockchain is immutable, so many may be used to traditional Web2 where upgrades are normal, in Web3 upgrades are sometimes frowned upon.

So if you have an idea, think hard about where you see the potential of it going in 1-2 years and build it based on the end goal, vs the now and what is trending.

Quick Intel

Quick Intel was born out of necessity due to the large number of scams in the space. The original idea came from a project called “Build Alpha”, where the goal was to provide a Dashboard of seemingly “safe” tokens. Eventually, this morphed into a clear focus on security and became “Quick Intel”.

With this, there was a smart contract with a fun built-in “game” that gave back to holders called “The Wave”. Eventually, this was disabled, but as contracts are immutable, the code lives in the contract. This put Quick Intel in a tough position, because being a leader in security, how were we going to have a smart contract that had unnecessary code?

Remember what I said about thinking 1-2 years down the line about your project? Yeah, this is where, had I spent more time thinking about the implications of a smart contract long-term, I would have not created the contract with extra code from the beginning. Although I was thinking of the holders and a fun game, the outcome ended up warranting a contract migration.

Now that we are in a place of a clean contract, I hope other current and up-and-coming developers take my lessons and my struggles building in Web3, learn from them, and apply them.

Because blockchain is here to stay, and it's not so greenfield anymore, many lessons can be learned.

So the question is, are you the type of dev that can admit when you are wrong and learn from others?