Monday, 18 June 2007

More Google Gears Tech

Laurence Rozier responded to my previous post:

I think Albert Ip provides some reasonable definitions of the terms peer-to-peer and mesh networking but as with a forest(especially a rainforest) precise definitions of trees, to degree they can be said to exist, tend to obscure the forestness of the tree.

He further adds:
Croquet is p2p at it’s core but each instance of Croquet is perfectly capable of simultaneously behaving as a client and/or server. Similarly, Jini/Javaspaces are not inherently p2p but can be configured to function as a p2p service.

Again, I believe there is a difference in our underlying assumption. Laurence, while talking about Google Gears (GG) which is a browser-based technology, is happy to extend the "forest" to include non-browser-based technologies. I have stayed within Web-based technologies and argued that the current GG implementation cannot provide the fundamental features to support peer-to-peer or mesh network.

Adding a local data storage does NOT provide the essential technical infra-structure for peer-to-peer or mesh network!

However, for those hard-core technies, some limited peer-to-peer techniques are available today without the need to invoke GG.

Firefox has an extension which adds a server to the browser, POW. With a web server incorporated, smart programmer will be able to enable ways of having a webpage calls the local web server. That's the enabling technology we need to kick-start peer-to-peer with web-technology.

Of course, there are several limitations to such an approach. But when more people are interested, things will start to look interesting.

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