Because so much of crypto is focused on traders and investors, it’s easy to overlook those who enable so many transactions — the developers. To that aim, Maria Shen of Electric Capital published a study on developer activity in the previous year, and the figures are impressive.
Shen spoke with journalist Laura Shin on the Unchained podcast about why it’s past time for the industry to take a closer look at its coders and smart contract creators.
We are very certain that we will succeed.
Shin and Shen were eager to point out that 2021 was a year of highs for developer activity, despite the fact that the price of Bitcoin fluctuated. Shen mentioned,
“First and foremost, I believe 2021 was simply a year of so many all-time highs. First and foremost, the number of monthly developers has reached an all-time high. We currently have over 18,000 monthly developers throughout all of Web3. And this is a 75 percent increase over last year.”
It’s worth noting that the report only included open source developers. Shen emphasized that the total number of Web3 developers might be significantly greater.
In terms of the research itself, Electric Capital identified Ethereum as the clear victor in terms of its ecosystem. According to the report,
“Ethereum continues to have the largest ecosystem of tools, apps, and protocols, with a 2.8x larger ecosystem than the second largest.” One out of every five new Web3 engineers works on Ethereum.”
Polkadot, Cosmos, Solana, and Bitcoin were the top four. During the podcast, Shen also mentioned that more than 34,000 developers will enter the industry in 2021, which is considerably higher than any other year in the industry’s [admittedly young] existence.
But what does the number of developers reveal about Web3 and crypto projects in general? According to the executive at Electric Capital,
“Overall, I believe that looking at open source development is a pretty good method to understand where the trend lines are happening.” And, of course, many important projects are open source, with large communities contributing to them.”
Getting down and dirty with development
The assessment from Electric Capital came just as the market descended into a rarely observed situation of intense panic. This occurred after the king coin fell below $42,000.
However, the developers’ activity report demonstrates that the crypto business is much more than only price performance.