Web of Things – Peer to Peer Web

At the end of this month, I am attending the Web Summer Camp at Rovinj, Croatia and I would be running a half-day workshop on 01.09.2017 about Web of Things – Peer to Peer Web.

Here is a little abstract about the workshop:

The web today is a growing universe. Over the years, web technologies have evolved to give web developers the ability to create new generations of useful web experiences. One such feature is WebRTC, which provides browsers and mobile applications with Real Time Communication (RTC) capabilities via simple JavaScript APIs. In this hands-on workshop you will learn to build applications to support real time communication on the web. You will build an app to get video and take snapshots with your webcam and share them peer-to-peer via WebRTC. Along the way, you’ll learn how to use the core WebRTC APIs and set up a messaging server using Node.

The focus of this workshop is hands-on coding exercises to build simple and fun WebRTC applications. WebRTC is a huge topic and explaining its technicalities + hands-on coding cannot be entirely covered in a 3-hour session. This blog post series is to aid the participants to know a bit more about WebRTC.

In this post I shall discuss about the title: Web of Things – Peer to Peer Web.

The Web of Things (WoT) is a term used to describe approaches, software architectural styles and programming patterns that allow real-world objects to be part of the World Wide Web. The Web of Things reuses existing and well-known web standards used in the programmable web (e.g., REST, HTTP, JSON), semantic web (e.g., JSON-LD, Microdata, etc.), the real-time web (e.g., Websockets) and the social web (e.g., oauth or social networks).

Peer to Peer Web is in the context of WebRTC which enables peer-to-peer audio, video, and data sharing between browsers (peers). Instead of relying on third-party plug-ins or proprietary software, WebRTC turns real-time communication into a standard feature that any web application can leverage via a simple JavaScript API.

WebRTC is P2P?

This is the traditional definition of the term peer to peer in the context of networks: Each computer acts as both the client and the server, communicating directly with the other computers.

A peer to peer network is often compared with a client server network and this is the obvious difference between the two: A client-server network involves multiple clients, or workstations, connecting to at least one central server. Most data and applications are installed on the server.

WebRTC enables peer to peer communication. But, WebRTC still needs servers!

  • For clients to exchange metadata to coordinate communication. This is called Signaling.
  • To cope with network address translators (NATs) and firewalls.

WebRTC is not only about a standard specification with a default implementation in browsers, but is also an open source media engine.



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