How many times in the past you had to “skip” an ad, or mess with multiple tabs popping out of nowhere – or how many Ad Blocking services are you using with your internet browser? Advertisements have always been a fundamentally weak proposition. They are intrusive, tangential, privacy invasive, and distract from the cleanliness of a website. Making matters worse, creative content publishers are suffering due to the advent of ad blockers and a general disregard for what advertisements have to offer. Here comes Oyster (PRL) to change the way websites are making profit and website users can enjoy a clean ‘surfing’ experience using IOTA‘s (MIOTA) Tangle Network.
The IOTA Tangle is a Directed Acyclic Graph (DAG), which means it is a blockless distributed ledger. A live visualization of the IOTA Tangle can be seen here. Each submitted transaction must perform Proof of Work (PoW) for two prior transactions, therefore confirming them. These two transactions are contextually referenced as the branch and trunk. Each transaction has a payload capacity which is used to retain the data that is uploaded by the Storage User. Transactions are propagated throughout a mesh-net of Nodes that have mutually peered with each other, whilst each Node retains a redundant copy of the transactions. This leads to a great redundancy of data copies, therefore heavily mitigating the risk of data-loss whilst not relying on a centralized hosting provider.
When a Storage User wants to upload a file to IOTA‘s (MIOTA) Tangle via the Oyster (PRL) Protocol, the file is split into parts and encrypted locally in the browser. This isolation ensures the impossibility of a malicious actor retrieving the data since it can only be accessed with the corresponding encryption key, which is known as the Oyster Handle.
So how Oyster works? It’s simple. Website visitors contribute a small portion of their CPU and GPU power to enable users’ files to be stored on a decentralized and anonymous ledger. In return, the website owners get paid indirectly by the storage users and website visitors can enjoy an ad-free browsing experience.
While the IOTA Tangle (Directed Acyclic Graph) is used for data retention and Proof of Work negotiation between Nodes. The Smart Contract technology of the Ethereum (ETH) Blockchain is used to produce Oyster Pearls (PRL) (Oyster’s native token), therefore activating the unique token attributes that enables Oyster operation.
No personal information, usernames, nor passwords are ever used. Each uploaded file is assigned a unique handle, which acts like a private seed key. Anyone that has the handle can retrieve the data from the Tangle, even if they were to use their own custom-built script and Tangle Node. Mixer contracts on the Ethereum Blockchain can conceal who paid for the storage.
The Oyster Protocol is developed in a community-driven model without any single point of failure. Extension projects can be built on top of the mesh-net topology and protocol API. This enables a whole class of truly decentralized applications to be built; such as decentralized telephone calling. Anyone is able to develop clients or extensions without permission from a central figurehead.
On a recent official publication by Taylor French (Design and Communications Director at Oyster), the platform launches the Testnet A and calls users to test the Oyster’s platform designed to upload and distribute files using IOTA‘s Tangle Network.
As the publication states, uploading a file on the Testnet will be free for the moment while implementing Oyseter’s PRL tokens will follow as a payment method for the service, after the alpha and beta testing, when the official Hooknode network, as they call it is opened.
More and more use-cases are relying on IOTA’s network for various reasons and Oyster is not left behind on that. Having a platform to upload and share encrypted files in a decentralized fashion is just the beginning of a new era of intel exchange. Would you suggest that Oyster had a great idea with the Testnet and Hooknode or do you think intel exchange should be “free”, especially when using the only feeless platform (IOTA) in the scene?
Let me know your thoughts in the comments below.