Sapiens and the Permanent Web

  • Religion
  • Free will
  • Companies
  • Nations/tribes
  • Value of currency
  • Equality
  • Happiness

The Arrival of the Internet

The internet takes it the next level. It allows us to transfer information, and so our imagined ideas, much more quickly, which allows culture and people’s beliefs to change more rapidly. It allows us to collaborate on a global scale agnostic to geography, as we’ve seen with things like the open source community or even just remote work. Nowadays it even is allowing us to perform transactions and transfer value, but more on that later.

The Current State of the Internet

Right now, the vast majority of applications and information run on/through the cloud. What is the cloud? In one word/acronym: AWS. More generally, in the current system, many of the most widely used platforms today rely on the compute power of servers hosted mainly by a few large tech companies, namely Amazon Web Services, Microsoft Azure, and Google Cloud Platform. We open our browser, we visit a website, we retrieve the location of the data from a series of DNS requests, mostly likely with the location being a server amongst one of these platforms, and the web page/data is sent back to us.

Up Ahead

With all the hype around cryptocurrencies right now, it’s got me reading all about this whole decentralized revolution. More broadly, my reading has led me to explore several interesting projects from an open-source research and development group called Protocol Labs. Among many, IPFS, or the Inter-Planetary File System, is a protocol/p2p network supporting what they call the permanent web, also known as the distributed web, or merkle web.

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