Decentralization of the web

From Computer Science Wiki
Web Science[1]

Distributed systems are designed to distribute tasks and data across multiple computers or devices, rather than relying on a central server or location. This can enable greater decentralization of the web, as it allows for the creation of decentralized applications (DApps) and decentralized networks that are not controlled by a single entity.

There are several reasons why distributed systems may act as a catalyst for greater decentralization of the web:

Decentralization of control: Distributed systems can enable the creation of decentralized networks and applications that are not controlled by a single entity, which can increase the decentralization of the web by distributing control among multiple parties.

  1. Increased security: Distributed systems can be more resilient to attacks and failures, as the failure of a single component does not necessarily result in the failure of the entire system. This can increase the security of decentralized networks and applications.
  2. Greater scalability: Distributed systems can scale more easily and efficiently, as tasks and data can be distributed across multiple computers or devices. This can allow decentralized networks and applications to handle larger volumes of traffic and users.
  3. Enhanced privacy: Distributed systems can provide greater privacy for users, as data is not stored in a central location that can be accessed by a single entity. This can be particularly important for decentralized networks and applications that handle sensitive data.

In summary, distributed systems can act as a catalyst for greater decentralization of the web by enabling the creation of decentralized networks and applications, increasing security, scalability, and privacy, and decentralizing control.

What is the decentralized web?[edit]

Here are some excellent quotes from the school of information studies at Syracuse University related to decentralized web:

  • Although originally decentralized, nowadays the Web is suffering the surveillance of U.S. centralized control monopolies. The Decentralized Web is the global effort to re-decentralize the infrastructure, protocols, applications and governance of the Web.[2]
  • A Web designed to resist attempts to centralize its architecture, services, or protocols [so] that no individual, state, or corporation can substantially control its use. [3]
  • A Decentralized Web belongs to all of us: Its power lies in our connections to each other. Its architecture encodes our values; its usage affirms our freedom to collaborate, share, and create.[4]
  • A Decentralized Web is free of corporate or government overlords. It is to communication what local farming is to food. With it people can grow their own information.[5]

As there isn't one governing "overseer" of the web, and the web exists in the context of a Distributed networks, it is easy to imagine how the web can become more decentralized.

Decentralized networks.png

Test advice[edit]

On tests, students are often able to explain the benefits of distributed web, but they often forget to include a brief outline of what exactly IS a distributed web.

Do you understand this?[edit]

From the IB: Students should be aware of developments in mobile technology that have facilitated the growth of distributed networks.


These standards are used from the IB Computer Science Subject Guide[6]

  • Explain why distributed systems may act as a catalyst to a greater decentralization of the web.