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Blockchain with Solidity: What to Learn First

groos profile image Nick Groos ・2 min read

Getting started in a blockchain development environment can feel completely foreign, especially if you are coming from web development.

Here is an overview of some key items I had to learn about in my first few days with Solidity:

Web3

Web3 is a term you will see often. In broad terms, it refers to certain interfaces and tools that make it easy to integrate with crypto wallets (like Metamask) and other blockchain-related functionality. There are a growing number of libraries that expose Web3 functionality in different dev environments.

Metamask

Metamask is currently the standard browser-based wallet to use while learning blockchain development. It has built-in integration with IDE and Testnet environments (more on this below) which makes it easy to acquire and use test Ether.

Gas

  • You have to pay gas (ether) to "change" the blockchain. This includes making a payment transaction, updating the state of a smart contract, or deploying a smart contract.
  • Consider your gas payment to be the transaction fee paid to the miners running the network
  • Your Solidity code should be optimized to reduce gas cost.

Remix and Hardhat

  • Remix is an online IDE for compiling and deploying contracts written in Solidity. It is the quickest way to start working with smart contracts.
  • Hardhat is a framework for doing blockchain development in a local environment. It can also deploy to live and testnet environments.

Testnets and Testnet Faucets

  • Testnets are test blockchain environments. Use them to deploy and test smart contracts without having to spend real crypto on gas.
  • Testnet Faucets will send cryptocurrency to your Metamask wallet which can be used on the Testnet environments.

ERC-20

This is a spec for implementing fungible tokens. Read about it here

ERC-721

This is a spec for implementing non-fungible tokens. Read about it here


I hope this list can save some time for anyone else out there learning Solidity. Let me know in the comments if there is something you think I should add.

Discussion (2)

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pedroomedicina profile image
Pedro Medina

Hi Nick, thank you very much for sharing this,

Can you tell us more about your steps from there?

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groos profile image
Nick Groos Author

Hi Pedro - From here I recommend getting hands on with the web3.js library, which will expose a lot of baseline features that are necessary in decentralized apps. After that I would say start creating some POC smart contracts using Solidity on Remix.

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