The Brave web browser takes one more step in favor of free technologies – and liberation, which are not always the same – and announces the adoption of the protocol IPFS, known as the ‘interplanetary file system’ (InterPlanetary File System), with the aim of “allowing users to navigate seamlessly through a decentralized Web.”
The development of IPFS began in 2015 to provide a Modern content addressable P2P network and protocol, that is, to ensure long-term storage and preservation of files on the Internet without the need to trust intermediaries (third-party servers), whose policies can be as fickle and arbitrary as those we have seen lately with censorship reactions of large companies and increasingly common.
IPFS has certain similarities with well-established protocols such as BitTorrent, allowing the hosting of files by users and their distribution over networks without the control or censorship of third parties. Likewise, IPFS allows browsing through web addresses that start with “ipfs: //” and that are hosted in nodes created by the users themselves with clients that support this technology.
In fact, IPFS was developed with the cryptocurrency exchange in mind, but its much greater functionality and the main purpose of it is prevent companies and government agencies from removing content from the Internet. Other features of this technology include performance and accessibility improvements with respect to other more widespread P2P protocols, facilitating, for example, the viewing of files without connection and greater reliability in their integrity.
To carry out this integration with the browser, Brave has collaborated with the company Protocol Labs, original developer of IPFS. “Advancing the transition to a decentralized Web, the integration of IPFS in Brave’s desktop browser increases the availability of content and the resilience of the Internet,” they explain in the Brave official blog.
Little by little, the Brave browser is becoming one of the most interesting alternatives in its category for its commitment to technologies in favor of privacy and independence, whose support it has been implementing in one way or another, from Blockchain to the integration of Tor in its private browsing mode. And all without sacrificing the power that its Chromium base provides.
As for IPFS, however attractive the proposal is, it is still a temptation to the future, because despite the 24 million users that the browser already boasts, it is certainly not a very widespread technology and due to Its implications do not seem likely to become popular in the short term either, being relegated for the moment to a specific and quite specialized niche of users.