This made me do an entire article on the new Beaker Browser.Here’s what’s been changed!
No more Dat, Beaker now uses Hypercore protocol
One of the components is Hyperdrive version 10, which was released the same days as Beaker. Hyperdrive is “a POSIX-like filesystem implementation, written in Node.js, that’s designed to be the storage layer for fast, scalable, and secure peer-to-peer applications.”
Like BitTorrent, Hyperdrive can be used to share a large collection of files. However, unlike BitTorrent, the contents can be modified.
Switching to the new protocol brings the following changes:
- Performance is now vastly superior thanks to new data structures.
- Connection-reliability has improved thanks to a switch to a hole-punching DHT.
- A new “mounts” feature for composing multiple Hyperdrives into a single hierarchy.
Since Beaker switched over to a new protocol, all previously created websites don’t work anymore. They did include a tool to convert sites from Dat to Hypercore. I tried it on a couple of one-page sites and it failed. It only created a new site that was totally empty of content.
New Beaker-website creating tools
The Beaker devs introduced several new tools to make editing easier. Now when you edit or create a site, you will get a split-screen view with a code editor on the left and a preview window on the right. The preview is updated whenever you save your work.
You can pop out each of these tools into their own window. If you have all three open, the left-hand panel can get crowded very quickly.
You can see more information about the release here
Final thoughts on the Beaker Browser 1.0 beta release
When I saw the announcement for Beaker Browser 1.0 Beta, I was hopeful that some of the complaints I had in the review would be fixed. Unfortunately, that didn’t happen.
My biggest problem with Beaker Browser was that it was hard to find
dat powered content. In the previous version, there was a page with a list of about a dozen projects running on the Dat protocol, but that was it.
If you dig around on the new version, you can find a list of people who have profiles created on Hypercore. Unfortunately, most of those pages are either blank or something someone quickly threw together. I imagine that this will change with the final version of 1.0 is released.
I did enjoy the editing tools. It made it very easy to slap together a quick webpage with a couple of lines of Markdown. I did create a site, but I’m not going to leave Beaker Browser running 24/7 to seed it. There currently isn’t any other way to do it.
What are your thoughts on the Beaker Browser? What are your thoughts on the peer-to-peer web? Please let us know in the comments below.
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