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Top 10 programming languages for Web3 developers

  • By Victoria Li
  • Published on March 27

Web3, the next iteration of the internet, promises a future built on decentralization, transparency and user empowerment. It’s a world where power shifts from corporations to individuals, enabled by blockchain technology. This new paradigm fosters a vibrant ecosystem of decentralized applications (DApps), ranging from revolutionary financial instruments like decentralized finance (DeFi) protocols to unique ownership models enabled by nonfungible tokens (NFTs).

As Web3 continues its rapid growth, the demand for skilled developers to build its infrastructure and applications is skyrocketing. But with myriad programming languages competing for dominance, choosing the right tool can make all the difference.

As a Web3 developer, staying abreast of the latest developments and choosing the language that best suits your project and skill set is critical to navigating this exciting new frontier. With the right tools in hand, developers can help shape the decentralized future.

The ideal language choice depends heavily on the specific project requirements. Building a secure DeFi protocol might require a language that prioritizes bulletproof code, requiring a high level of technical assessment in areas such as security principles and test-driven development (TDD) expertise.

On the other hand, creating an immersive metaverse experience might necessitate using languages designed for game development, requiring strong problem-solving skills and familiarity with relevant frameworks. A strong understanding of web architecture and the ability to collaborate effectively with teams focused on front-end technologies such as 3D graphics engines will be critical.

Here’s a breakdown of the top 10 programming languages for Web3 development, each offering unique advantages for building the next generation of decentralized applications:

1. Solidity

Created in 2014 specifically for the Ethereum blockchain, Solidity is the undisputed heavyweight of Web3 development. Its syntax is inspired by familiar languages like JavaScript and Python, making it accessible to developers with existing experience. 

Solidity excels at writing smart contracts — self-executing snippets of code that automate agreements on the blockchain. Popular projects such as NFT marketplace OpenSea and decentralized exchange Uniswap leverage Solidity’s robust functionality.

2. Vyper

Vyper, another Ethereum-focused language, emerged in 2016 with a laser focus on security. Unlike Solidity, Vyper uses a stricter type of system that minimizes the risk of vulnerabilities that malicious actors can exploit. 

This emphasis on security makes Vyper ideal for building mission-critical applications where security is paramount. While not as widely adopted as Solidity, Vyper is gaining traction among developers who prioritize bulletproof smart contracts.

3. Rust

Developed by Mozilla in 2010, Rust is a versatile language known for its blazing speed, memory efficiency and strong emphasis on error prevention. These qualities translate perfectly to the demanding world of Web3 development.

Complex DApps with high transaction volumes can benefit greatly from Rust’s performance optimizations. Projects like the high-speed Solana blockchain and decentralized storage network Filecoin use Rust’s capabilities to create scalable, efficient Web3 solutions.

4. Haskell

Haskell, a purely functional programming language, may not be the most intuitive choice for beginners. However, its unique approach offers several advantages for Web3 development. Haskell’s emphasis on immutability — data cannot be changed after it is created — aligns perfectly with the core principles of blockchain technology. 

This immutability promotes trust and transparency in decentralized applications. While not as widely used as other languages on this list, Haskell’s functional nature makes it a compelling choice for developers seeking a secure, reliable foundation for their Web3 projects.

5. Golang

Golang, often referred to as Go, is a relatively new language created by Google in 2009. Its focus on simplicity, readability and concurrency makes it a popular choice for building robust back-end systems. 

While not as specialized for smart contract development as Solidity or Vyper, Go’s versatility is proving valuable in building the infrastructure that powers Web3 applications. Projects such as the Helium Network, a decentralized wireless network, and the InterPlanetary File System (IPFS), a distributed storage protocol, rely on Go’s efficient and scalable nature.

6. JavaScript

JavaScript (JS), the ubiquitous language of the web, may seem like an unexpected entry. However, its dominance in front-end development extends to Web3. Frameworks like React and Angular, built on top of JS, are instrumental in creating user-friendly interfaces for DApps. 

Additionally, the rise of JavaScript frameworks like Ethers.js and Web3.js provide libraries and tools specifically for interacting with blockchains, making JS a valuable asset for Web3 development. Popular projects like the MetaMask crypto wallet and Decentraland virtual world platform leverage JavaScript’s front-end capabilities.

7. Python

Known for its readability and extensive libraries, Python provides a smooth entry point for developers venturing into Web3. Its versatility extends to building various components within a Web3 project. From scripting tools for interacting with blockchains to back-end development for DApps, Python’s ease of use makes it a popular choice. 

Libraries like and Brownie simplify blockchain interactions, while frameworks like Flask and Django can be used to build robust DApp back ends. Projects like Augur, a decentralized prediction market, and Uniswap take advantage of Python’s versatility.

8. C++

C++, a veteran programming language known for its speed and memory efficiency, finds its niche in Web3 development for performance-critical tasks. When dealing with high-frequency trading applications or complex blockchain protocols, C++’s ability to optimize code execution becomes invaluable. 

While not ideal for building user interfaces or day-to-day DApp logic, C++ is a powerful tool for developers looking to push the boundaries of Web3 performance. Projects such as the EOS blockchain platform and Solana use C++ for core functionality.

9. Rholang

Rholang, a relatively new language (introduced in 2017), is purpose-built for the development of secure smart contracts. Its focus on formal verification, a process of mathematically proving the correctness of code, aims to minimize vulnerabilities and bugs in smart contracts. This emphasis on security makes Rholang ideal for building DApps that handle sensitive financial transactions or valuable digital assets. 

While still in the early stages of adoption, Rholang is gaining traction among developers who prioritize bulletproof smart contracts. Projects like Aeternity, a blockchain platform focused on scalability and security, use Rholang for smart contract development.

10. Cairo

Another relatively young language is Cairo (introduced in 2020), which is specifically designed for StarkNet, a permissioned blockchain scaling solution. Unlike traditional blockchains, StarkNet uses cryptographic proofs to verify transactions, providing significant scalability benefits. Cairo uses a high-level syntax similar to Python, making it accessible to developers. 

However, its tight integration with StarkNet’s unique architecture requires a deeper understanding of the underlying system. Projects built on StarkNet, such as Sorare — a fantasy football game using NFTs — use Cairo for smart contract development.