Developers in the cryptocurrency environment are talking about a new kind of internet. Organizations fromConsenSysto OpenBazaar havementioneda project called the InterPlanetary File System (IPFS) — a project that aims to create a distributed web, much different to the one we use today. Also read: The Digital Revolution Increases Sovereignty
IPFS Seeking to Evolve the Internet’s Centralized Infrastructure
Before becoming an open source community, IPFS was originally designed by Juan Benet and developed by Protocol Labs. At its foundations, IPFS is a peer-to-peer distributed framework that feels like the World Wide Web but acts more like BitTorrent. IPFS replaces the cumbersome Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP) with a hypermedia element between manynodes.
HTTP networks are very centralized and download content from single servers. Servers that operate this way often suffer from attacks likeDDoS and bandwidth issues. As a result, the internet is slower than it should be, costly, and dependent on central entities. The open source IPFS community claims its network has no single point of failure. Users access content via a framework of trustless nodes, avoiding DDoS attacks.
The core of IPFS utilizes itsBitTorrent style swarm by exchanging git files, making it a fully distributed permanent web. In essence, the project enables fully distributed applications, making the web “faster, safer, and more open.” All IPFS websites have no central authority and no origin servers. Additionally, the websites don’t communicate with servers and pages run on the client-side. The decentralized internet project’s white paper explains :
IPFS is a distributed file system that seeks to connect all computing devices with the same system of files. —IPFS is a Free Open Source project, with hundreds of contributors.—The project seeks to evolve the infrastructure of the Internet and the Web, with many things we’ve learned from successful systems, like Git, BitTorrent, Kademlia, Bitcoin, many more.
Just as There’s a Need For Decentralized Money, So Too a Distributed Web
Currently, internet controlling, monitoring and monopolies are beginning to wreak havoc on our web. This can be seen in countries like China with its Great Firewall, and Russia, with its many manyblacklisted websites. On October 1st ICANN (Internet Corporation of Assigned Names and Numbers) will be removed from American control. Many believe this will put the internet into the hands of the U.N. — which has shown blatant disregard for free speech.
When Edward Snowdenunveiled many secrets of how governments worldwide monitor the internet, there was shock. People believe releasing ICANN to a globalized front will strengthen these entities monitoring and surveillance efforts. Former U.N. Ambassador John Bolton believes that, in 10 years, the U.N. will control internet services indefinitely. As a result, in Bolton’s opinion, this will be the end of the internet as we know it. The former U.N. official explained his view, stating:
In an international environment, I can tell you from my own experience, when you get all kinds of governments from all over the world setting standards and making decisions, it will be far less free than it is now.
Much Like Cryptocurrencies IPFS and ZeroNet Are Censorship Resistant Methods