Brave – On a mission to fix the web.

Just visited a new website and you had to click on a “terms and conditions” agreement? … or a site that “uses cookies” for your user experience? This is where sites collect information you called “analytics”. It’s used for “business intelligence” and “business analytics”. This is how Google, Yahoo, Facebook and other websites know what ad to show you next. All this data collecting adds to and builds an electronic profile of your surfing habits and slows your net online surfing ability. As a consequence “you” have become a product or commodity for the information gathers of the world. Don’t want to be apart of the statistics or would you rather be the one being paid for your surfing curiosities? Enter the “Brave” browser, “a free and open-source web browser developed by Brave Software, Inc. based on the Chromium web browser. The browser blocks ads and website trackers. The company has proposed adopting a Get paid to surf business model in a future version of the browser. Wikipedia

Brave claims that pages load 2x faster on desktops and up to 8x faster on mobile devices; that it fights malware and prevents tracking which in turn keeps your personal information safe an secure. If you notice brave has a familiar browser look – it’s based on Chromium (as is Chrome). You can find the feature list on the creator’s website. These features like syncing across devices may seem esoteric. Some will question why? I know your surfing may seem fast enough, but try Brave on a mobile devise and you’ll notice several things rather quickly, not only is the speed of loading a mobile enabled site faster and there are no ads but the amount of data used by your carrier is also lowered. For those on a fixed amount of data or a fixed amount of high speed data this will stretch and extend your surfing activities over time. This last point alone is worth loading Brave as your default browser on your tablet or phone.

3X Faster Brave Browser

If being a faster platform to surf the web with wasn’t enough, there are also some “safer” surfing benefits. Brave blocks internet tracking scripts that provide demographic information such as “your location, behavior and other browsing activity.” The creepy Minority Report kinda stuff where Big Brother is watching you and marketing to your current shopping interests – retina eye/facial recognition scanner not needed. As such Brave has a private browsing mode that does not track the websites you visit (no history so you can’t revisit the sites in this mode without knowing where you have been). You can use their “Private Tabs with Tor, to stop trackers and provide a deep level of protection” – and this appears to work, I could find no surfing history or site content stored locally on my machine. This blocking of ads is a key element in the surfing speed being returned to your browser.

Speed and security … wait, there’s something else as well. As an end-user you can contribute back to the websites you use the most as a means of encouraging the site creators to continue to offer content, “paying it forward” as the Brave creators put it. The neat thing here is that you can remain anonymous with your surfing as the ads you choose to support can not collect information about you. Can’t contribute directly? Use the “Brave Rewards” for the sites you visit the most as a way of expressing gratitude for their site. Brave accumulates “Basic Attention Tokens (BATs) automatically when you choose to view ads. These tokens can then be given to the websites you want to support. The cool part is, you are in charge of the private ads you see that are not natively embedded in the websites you visit (meaning you will still see ads, just not those annoying third party, pop-up or syndicated ads). Brave also has in the works an idea to reward the surfer as well.

Creators will always need your support to make amazing things. Soon enough, you’ll be able to directly withdraw the BAT you earn rather than using it to support the sites you love. To do this, you’ll need to create a wallet using a partner of ours. Over time, we’ll add more options to connect your own wallet to Brave Rewards. Stay tuned for details; we’ll be announcing developments as they come.

If this catches on you can bet the other browser coders will offer the same. Until then there’s Brave, and I have a habit of sticking with what works. Time without a doubt is the most valuable thing we all possess:

All I know
Time is a valuable thing
Watch it fly by as the pendulum swings
Watch it count down to the end of the day
The clock ticks life away

In the End – Linkin Park

Don’t waste your life waiting for a website to load.

In the immortal words of Napoleon Dynamites’ Kip as channeled through my daughter, “peace out homey.”

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