Power in the Age of the Feudal Internet

While this article is already a couple years old, someone recently reminded us about it.
The Internet started out as a way to build resilient systems: systems that could deal with black-outs or the disappearing of a server. And if one went down, we’d just prop up another one.
When ‘Cloud’ was the newest buzz-word, we were told that it would give us flexibility: if we didn’t like our current provider, we could pick up and move to another – it’s all in the cloud anyway, whether it’s over here or over there, it doesn’t matter, right?
Sadly, the cloud has become a mist. A mist preventing us from seeing what could have been. It prevents us from venturing out because we can’t move from one provider to another.

Regardless of how you feel about it, “Power in the Age of the Feudal Internet” is an interesting read.

Tool in the Spotlight: youtube-dl

This month’s Tool in the Spotlight: youtube-dl, a command-line program to download videos from your favorite video site(s). It works on Linux, Windows and macOS.

This tool enables you to download (almost) any video from your favorite video site so you can watch it later or just keep a copy of it around. It has support for over 800 sites and that list is always growing. It has an extensive set of options you can give it, including proxy settings and, what’s very interesting for this kind of thing, geo-verification proxy settings that enables you to do location “correction” or spoofing.

You can get the source for the tool and instructions on how to install it or build it yourself at https://github.com/rg3/youtube-dl.

NOTE: we are entirely unaffiliated with whoever produces this tool, we receive no compensation whatsoever from them.

Tool in the Spotlight: Decentraleyes

This month’s Tool in the Spotlight: Decentraleyes, a Firefox extension which performs local emulation of Content Delivery Networks (CDN):
Websites have increasingly begun to rely much more on large third-parties for content delivery. Canceling requests for ads or trackers is usually without issue, however blocking actual content, not unexpectedly, breaks pages. The aim of this add-on is to cut-out the middleman by providing lightning speed delivery of local (bundled) files to improve online privacy.

Check out the tool at https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/decentraleyes/.

NOTE: we are entirely unaffiliated with whoever produces this tool, we receive no compensation whatsoever from them.

Tool in the Spotlight: HTTPS Everywhere

This month’s Tool in the Spotlight: HTTPS Everywhere, a Firefox extension by the good folks over at the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) that encrypts your communications with many major websites, making your browsing more secure. It checks whether websites you visit offer encrypted browsing and if they do, automatically switches you to the encrypted version of the website.

Check out the tool’s website at https://www.eff.org/https-everywhere for download instructions.

NOTE: we are entirely unaffiliated with whoever produces this tool, we receive no compensation whatsoever from them.

Tool in the Spotlight: Click&Clean

This month’s Tool in the Spotlight: Click&Clean, a Firefox extension that eliminates data related to your current browser session and which can be set up so that it automatically clears out any residual browsing data when you terminate your browser. This way, every time you start your browser, you start with a clean slate.

Check out the tool at https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/clickclean/

NOTE: we are entirely unaffiliated with whoever produces this tool, we receive no compensation whatsoever from them.