Students from Glasgow University’s computer science wing have initiated a research and development exploratory course with Maidsafe. Academic alumni will develop with the SAFE (Secure Access For Everyone) Network to create next-generation internet applications.
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After a Decade of RD, University of Glasgow Students Will Explore the Maidsafe Network
After over a decade of research, UK-based Maidsafe recently launched its alpha test network. The project aims to build a decentralized, peer-to-peer web.
In theory, the platform removes the need for centralized servers and puts the internet back into individuals’ hands. If successful, the internet via Maidsafe would work similarly to the way it does now — but data would be encrypted and distributed across a peer-to-peer network.
At Glasgow University, students in the computer science department will work directly with the protocol. Dr. Inah Omoronyia, a Lecturer in Software Engineering and Information Security and the MaidSafe team, will work hands-on with students during the course. Additionally, MaidSafe’s CEO and engineer David Irvine will provide the class with app building guidance and decentralized data and communications networks.
Irvine, commented on the workshop with Glasgow University, stating:
We are delighted to be working with a university with such a rich heritage, and we very much look forward to using the applications created by their students. Where better to push the envelope of evolutionary thinking than the country that Voltaire opined ‘We look to Scotland for all our ideas of civilization’.
Centralization Threatens the Internet
The academic project comes at a time when the internet has grown more centralized. These days, giant tech companies control access to the web and governments try to control internet content.
As a result, there has been great debate concerning the proper methods to manage online behavior. World Wide Web creator, Sir Tim Berners-Lee, believes developers need to focus on users’ privacy and security.
To do this, Maidsafe intends to build a decentralized, censorship-resistant internet by enabling peer-to-peer features.
Students at Glasgow will receive a zero-cost infrastructure using the SAFE network. Maidsafe will include current APIs, storage creation, and email applications. In addition, Maidsafe developers will provide tutorials the company creates itself. These instructions will help give students information on complex functionality usually only available to application programmers.
Glasgow Students Will Practice Security and Privacy Functions to Build a More Distributed Web
Glasgow is striving to be a school that embraces cutting edge technology. Already, the University has one of the UK’s top computer science departments, and it is among the top 100 worldwide.
Dr. Inah Omoronyia explained students will gain significant knowledge and resources due to the exploratory class.:
“It’s a great opportunity for our students at Glasgow University to get hands-on experience with building apps for the SAFE network. Security and privacy functions are now core to modern day software systems; our students are excited to learn new ways of building such systems using cutting-edge technology.”
Maidsafe is not alone in its endeavor to decentralize the internet. Other open source projects such as IPFS, Blockstack, and ZeroNet also aim to produce a distributed, censorship-resistant web.
What do you think about Glasgow University students experimenting with Maidsafe technology? Let us know in the comments below.
Images via Shutterstock and Pixabay.
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