How To Become a Blockchain Developer?

If you have followed social media or the news long enough, you would’ve heard about crypto-currency, Bitcoin, Ethereum, and more. This article is about the foundation that makes it all possible, in other words, Blockchain Technology, and it is set to revolutionize any industry that works with large amounts of data and requires a decentralized approach to solving challenges – for example, finance, information technology, healthcare, etc. According to Grand View Research, the global Blockchain technology annual revenues are poised to reach US$20 billion.

Table of Contents

  • What is blockchain technology?
  • Who is a blockchain developer?
  • What are the technical skill sets required to become a blockchain developer?
  • What other knowledge is important for a blockchain developer?
  • How to become a Blockchain Developer

What is blockchain technology?

If you are a computer science student, chances are you would know the theoretical definition of blockchain. However, in layman’s terms, blockchain technology is a system of recording information, making it difficult or impossible to edit, hack, or cheat the system. At the very foundation, it is a digital ledger that records transactions, duplicates them, and distributes them across the entire network of systems on the blockchain, making it accessible for everybody and transparent. This digital ledger technology is the foundation for decentralized finance or web3.0 development.

Due to Blockchain technology’s versatility, transparency, and security, it is being considered by many industries, especially finance. For instance, according to Accenture, blockchain technology could save investment banks up to US$ 10 billion in the clearing and settlement sectors. Similarly, decentralized finance, or DeFi, is the foundation of cryptocurrency, digital currency lending, and P2P transactions, and blockchain technology is the underlying technology that powers these advancements.

Before we understand the role of a blockchain developer and how to become one, let us understand the types of blockchains available currently.

Three types of blockchain architectures are most common:

Public blockchain

The public blockchain network is a permission-less ecosystem; anyone can participate without restrictions in the public system. Public blockchains are the foundations for most types of cryptocurrencies governed by rules or algorithms. 

Permissioned or private blockchain

A private or permissioned blockchain allows organizations to control who can access blockchain data. Only those users who have permission can access specific datasets.

Federated or consortium blockchain

A federated blockchain comprises a consensus process controlled by a preselected set of nodes or stakeholders.

Who is a blockchain developer?

There might be a lot of questions buzzing in your head currently. “Who is a blockchain developer” “What skills do they possess?”, “Can I become one without any coding knowledge?” etc. Let us explore the answers to all these questions and more.

A blockchain developer is responsible for developing decentralized applications (dApps) and smart contract development based on the objective of the blockchain network. They must also understand and enhance the blockchain architectures and ecosystem by designing 3D models, 3D assets, and 3D designs like those used in web3 games.

Blockchain developers are dichotomized into Core Blockchain Developer and Blockchain Software Developer. The Core Blockchain is responsible for building the core, or the foundational blockchain structure on which subsequent additions and developments will occur. On the other hand, the blockchain software developer is responsible for developing dApps, smart contracts, assets, and architecture management. In some cases, the same person can play both roles, similar to a DevOps professional who combines operational knowledge with development competency.

A typical job description for a blockchain developer:

  • Collaborate with managers and stakeholders to assess blockchain technology needs and envisage functionalities.
  • Develop application features and APIs by writing multithreaded codes
  • Protect digital transaction data against cyberattacks and information hacks
  • Secure blockchain applications and optimize them by integrating new tools and technologies
  • Educate sales personnel on blockchain features that allow secure digital payments
  • Document blockchain development processes and comply with best data protection practices
  • Keep up with current blockchain technologies and cryptography practices

What is the technical skillset you require to become a blockchain developer?

Blockchain development is an extension of software development with the caveat that everything must be aligned with the core blockchain architecture and be integrated properly. 

That being said, what skills do blockchain developers mandatorily possess:

Software Development and Coding: Blockchain developers are predominantly computer science, IT, or mathematics graduates, so knowledge of multiple programming languages, including python, C#, and Java, is essential. 

Understanding data structures: Given blockchain is largely contingent on handling and redirecting data appropriately, understanding data structures and storing data securely and efficiently in the distributed ledger is a must-have skill. 

Database and Networking: Because blockchain is a P2P ecosystem with multiple nodes and chains, it is important to possess database management skills. 

Cryptography is the method of securing information from cyber threats and hacks. Being abreast of the latest cryptography techniques is essential for a blockchain developer and one of the most important skills.

What other knowledge is important for a blockchain developer?

  1. Cryptonomics – Cyptonomics is a portmanteau combining cryptography and economics, and strong cryptonomics knowledge is important for creating a robust cryptography ecosystem to prevent attacks. It requires a combination of strong development and mathematical knowledge.
  2. Understand better about Ethereum and DApps – Ethereum is one of the most popular blockchain platforms and is an open-source system used by many industry experts. Knowledge of Ethereum is important for developing smart contracts and decentralized applications. DApps enable functionality within a crypto ecosystem, and blockchain developers are responsible for developing DApps.
  3. Knowledge of Solidity – Solidity is a programming language similar to OOPS and is used to create smart contracts.

Now, let us answer the big question, ‘How to become a Blockchain Developer?’

Step 1: Academic Knowledge
Most blockchain developers have a bachelor’s degree in computer science, IT, or mathematics, considering the skillsets required to build blockchain applications and interfaces. Understanding the basics of blockchain in this phase of life is essential for further growth. 

Step 2: Get certified
Platforms like Simplilearn, Coursera, etc., offer end-to-end and modular blockchain certification courses in key skills and competencies to expand your knowledge.

Step 3: Get hands-on experience
If you are currently a software developer, seek project opportunities to develop blockchain applications and software infrastructure to gain hands-on experience before applying to a company for a full-time position. If you are a fresher, gain the necessary skills and seek internship positions to learn as much as possible before applying for a full-time role. Most blockchain roles will require experience, so build the same accordingly. 

Step 4: Stay abreast with trends and be part of a community
Be part of a blockchain or crypto community to understand how the landscape is evolving and what in-demand skills are. Network with industry experts and seasoned professionals to seek their input and work on your profile accordingly. 

According to Glassdoor, the national average salary for a blockchain developer is INR 7,00,000+ and grows exponentially with experience and the organization. 

Take your first step toward being a blockchain developer now. 

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