IPFS and the Future of the Internet

DLT Labs
5 min readApr 27, 2020
What is IPFS and why should you care?

What is IPFS ?

Today, I am going to talk about Interplanetary File System’s (IPFS) — what is it and why you should care.

I swear I’m not quoting some intergalactic technology from Startrek… well, sort of. I’m sure many are now familiar with fundamental blockchain architecture principles such as decentralized databases and immutable audit trails.

IPFS too is similar to these, since it is an open-source, peer-to-peer decentralized way of storing and accessing data.

Traditionally, storing and accessing data digitally via the Internet is done through HyperText Transfer Protocol (HTTP). Your device’s IP address is used to identify the specific server that is hosting the requested information, through location-based addressing.

Data is identified by identifying where it is located rather than by its content. If the hosting server goes down, by accident or on purpose, expect a 500 series error code.

Today’s web is quite centralized, causing unnecessary inefficiencies, expenses, and limiting opportunity.

IPFS data is stored across a network of computers as a hash/value pair, a user does not have to rely on a centralized server to provide the information.

A few ways IPFS can benefit us, practically

  • Want to download that new Podcast? HTTP will download it from one computer instead of downloading pieces from multiple sources simultaneously.
    IPFS can save you a lot of bandwidth through p2p transfer and greatly improve file transfer and streaming speeds across the Internet.
  • On average, a web page is active and available for around three months before it’s gone forever. Data in HTTP can be accessed, altered and removed by any party with control of the server.
    IPFS stores every version of your files, allowing for resilient data mirroring infrastructure.
  • IPFS can deliver on the initial vision of the Internet — an “open, flat web with or without internet connectivity” transferring large amounts of data…
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