Mozilla founder, Brave unveiled by Mozilla

Brendan Eich (co-founder of Mozilla) and the creator of JavaScript has revealed his latest project, Brave. Brave is a Web browser which blocks ads automatically, replaces blocked ads with its ads, and then allows users to create their own. Brave Software, which is behind the eponymous browser will get a 15 per cent cut of any ad revenue.

Brave Open-source Web browser. Brave GitHub is available for Mac/Windows/Linux , Android. It appears that the iOS version of Brave is built on Firefox and the PC version on Chromium (an open source project that is somewhat similar to the development Chrome). The Android version of Brave looks to be based on Bubble.

Brave can be downloaded and built from a GitHub repository. Beta testers can sign up, and get pre-built binaries. There’s currently a wait list.

Built-in Adblocking

Brave is based on the principle that Brave automatically disables programmatic online advertising. It also blocks tracking cookies. Programmmatic advertising is when ads are automatically placed onto websites. A mix of both traditional display advertising (which is sold as human-to–human advertising deals) and programmematic advertising can be found on most websites.

The theory is that this works in the same way as Adblock Plus and Ghostery. This makes it possible to browse the Web faster, but also safer (in the case of Malvertising)

Brave is essentially a cash grab. Brave is not a glorified advertising blocker. Brave removes ads from websites and then inserts their programmatic advertisements. Brave is rumored to fill these ads with ad networks who work directly with Brave. Brave will also police these ads in order to ensure they’re not more intrusive/malicious that the ones that were removed. Brave will get a 15% share of the advertising revenue in exchange. Brave will not use any tracking cookies that track your movements on the Internet. Brave instead uses your local browsing history in order to show you ads.

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Brave’s ability to insert its own ads is not clear. It will likely be slower than any other browser. New ads must still be pulled down from the Internet. Brave’s ads don’t load as fast as the ones that it replaces. Brave uses a fair amount of CPU power to insert ads.

55% of the rest will be paid to publishers and 15% to the ad suppliers. Curiously the final 15% will be returned by the publisher to the user. They can then make micropayments on their preferred websites. It is not yet clear how the revenue sharing will actually work.

Brave handles advertising in a very simple way. Brave also integrates the HTTPS Anywhere add-on. If a HTTPS version is available on a website, Brave will make an automatic switch. If other features are available in the browser, like cross-platform sync and incognito, Brave will automatically switch to them.

Brave, which has already raised PS1.75 million (or $22.5 million) through angel investments so far is still looking for additional. Eich claims that to achieve critical mass and prove the system is working, he will need 7,000,000 users. It is expected that the system will be stable and available for public use “later this calendar year.”

Double dip

While it is one thing for Web browsers to automatically block advertising, it’s another to allow them to place their own advertisements and earn revenue.

Brave needs to have direct contact with major advertising networks to make its block-andreplace model work. Brave will block advertisements from the same networks at the same moment. The advertisers would have to pay twice to get a spot on Brave. This gets removed automatically. And then, again to allow Brave to show their ads.

Brave might be an intriguing idea but it’s not recommended that you put your own advertisements in front of those of another advertiser.