Novus, a software development firm is leveraging the IPFS (InterPlanetary File System) protocol to provide a fully decentralized content index that is both immutable and censorship resistant. The app, dubbed the Advanced File Index (“AFIX”), combines the advantages both the IPFS and the Novusphere blockchain-based database. Let’s see how it works.
The InterPlanetary File System (IPFS) is a protocol designed to create a permanent and decentralized method of storing and sharing files on a fully peer-to-peer environment which powers the creation of diversely resilient networks, enabling persistent availability with or without Internet backbone connectivity.
IPFS works in the following way. Each file submitted to the network and its blocks are given a unique hash which allows IPFS to automatically remove duplicates and track version history for every file. The network is run by nodes, much like Bitcoin itself, but instead of storing the information relative to all of the network’s content, nodes store only content that they are interested in keeping along with some common indexing information. This indexing information helps users find the file they are looking for by “asking” the network to find the nodes that store said content.
This system allows users to save on bandwidth, allowing high volumes of data to be distributed with efficiency, since the file is being downloaded from multiple computers (in contrast with HTTP which downloads files from a single computer at a time). Since IPFS provides historic versioning, information is not easily erased like it is from the web.
The project put forward by Novus will utilize the Novusphere blockchain as a database layer for the IPFS content. This database allows Novus to build an advanced index for any files that exist in the IPFS network and provides metadata for each file.
Novusphere community members are able to submit existing content from the IPFS to the AFIX gateway by providing title, description and so forth. The user also submits the cryptographic hash that references the file on the IPFS network. A render script can also be set to define how to present the data to the user. On this same gateway, anyone can search, find, and access the files with ease.
The user can the use Specific File Search Interfaces (SFSI) to narrow down his search in a content-specific format. For example, users that want to watch movies can use the a SFSI designed for movies, that only searches for videos and presents them in an organized fashion. Check out the video SFSI.
Although the Gateway is currently hosted by Novus, it will eventually become fully decentralized when the Novusphere full nodes are production ready, allowing them to host the Gateway themselves.
In the future, Novus will also integrate Atmos into the system. Atmos is the native value token in the Novusphere blockchain. Several systems are planned to be implemented into the index, such as a content rating system, a content request system, dispute resolution system and gateway advertisement. These systems will allow users to earn and spend Atmos, creating several use cases for the asset and revenue opportunities for users.
In order to fund the development and marketing of the platform, the project already underwent its first funding round in which it collected 222 Bitcoins. The second round is currently ongoing and is scheduled to end in late March/early April. To learn more about Novus, Novusphere and the AFIX check out the official Novusphere website.