From @switchingsocial

"The Brave browser knows where users spend their time, making it the perfect tool to calculate and reward publishers with BATs."

So wait, Brave respects your privacy, but also knows where you spend your time?


I am going to start lobbying pretty hard to get this off PTIO! :)

@danarel @switchingsocial I think they mean it in a general sense, like “users spend most of their time using a web browser” 😜

But idk! Maybe it’s not as privacy respecting as we’d hoped. I haven’t researched Brave too closely.

@jonah @danarel

Brave is owned by Peter Thiel, the same guy who owns Palantir:

"Peter Thiel’s data-mining company is using War on Terror tools to track American citizens. The scary thing? Palantir is desperate for new customers."

@switchingsocial @jonah @danarel To be clear, Brave is not owned by Peter Thiel, it received early funding from one of his VC firms.

By all means, Palantir is Skynet and should be feared, but I'm not sure Brave and Palantir are anywhere on the same level. Open to new evidence though...

@deceptivecornbread @switchingsocial @jonah

VC firms take a % in ownership stake when they invest. So he does in that sense own Brave, at least part of it, and he will want his investment back, and more. So his involvement, knowing his business practices should be seen a massive red flag.

@jonah @switchingsocial

I have spent a lot of time researching it, and I know Switching.Social has too. Thats why neither of us will recommend it.

@jonah @switchingsocial @danarel It actually is which sites. The idea of BAT is you put in some money every (month or whatever), and then it's allocated proportionally to various sites based on how much you use those sites.
@jonah @danarel @switchingsocial (Or at least that was once the idea. I haven't looked into it recently. It's just always skeeved me out.)

@vecna @jonah @switchingsocial

That's actually incorrect. That's ONE "feature" of Brave, but BAT is also selling advertising, not simply their creator "funding" platform.


Brave is part-owned by Peter "Palantir" Thiel through his Founders Fund venture capital firm.

They list FF at the top of their backers on their b2b site:

Thiel makes millions from spying on people and is on the board of Facebook. He's absolutely the wrong person to trust with privacy. does NOT recommend Brave.

@clarjon1 @danarel

I don't know much about it. It's based on Chromium which is a concern due to Google's dominance of its development.

However, there isn't a huge amount of choice these days.

Have you had good experiences with it?

@switchingsocial @danarel
From my understanding, it's a chromium based browser put out by one of the original co-founders of the Opera browser.

It's gone through a few facelifts over the years, but offers a number of UI customizations during first run post-install.

Like classic Opera, it offers sidebar widgets, and allows you to create new "widgets" that you can plop a site into -- it's nice having instant access to a speedtest, or a fediverse web client that's persistent.

It's got a proprietary freeware license, tho sources are available for all for audit etc

Also I just discovered that it has profile support, but instead of using remote server, all browser profiles are stored locally and appear to be easily swappable.

There is a "sync" feature, but it's not restricting functionality to try and get you to use it, it seems to be pretty unobtrusive and other than the first time run, you only notice it if you click on a easily missable cloud icon or spot it in settings...

There's also a number of icons that allow for quick tweaks -- easy screen capture of pages, ability to toggle the load/animation of images, and a number of "page actions" for tweak/debugging/etc (screenshot attached to post)

I've not used it that often because when I first started using it, despite the chromium base, it wasn't using chrome's addon repository, because the devs wanted to make a competing addon store. After a while tho, it looks like that was too much to do themselves, and have allowed it to use the extensions.

It's going to be interesting with the upcoming flow that Google is going to push, to see if they're going to keep the ability for adblockers to work as well as they do currently

All in all, it seems like a pretty dang flexible browser, and I've been starting to use it more often -- especially when my 'net is starting to flake out.

I'd love to get someone who has the time/skill to get more in-depth with the browser and confirm how well it handles user privacy, what data it sends to its masters, etc and see what they have to say about it.

@clarjon1 @danarel

I wish I could help but I'm not an expert on this, I'm not a developer or security researcher :(

As you say, it will be interesting to see what happens when Google tries to sabotage adblockers.

This is part of the reason for preferring Firefox and related browsers, though even there is the concern that they get a lot of income from Google.

The browser scene is pretty rubbish right now :blobfrown:

@switchingsocial @danarel

It really, really is.

As an aside, I find it a bit interesting that chrome would be a bit of a different beast ( and safari as well ) given that webkit is based on a fork of KDE's html renderer, khtml

Perhaps someone could revive this rendering engine?

It'd be awesome to see more competing engines for sure -- even tho I'm sure there'd be some web devs complaining about having to test more browsers haha.

@clarjon1 @switchingsocial @danarel
revive? #WebKit is well-alive.
Obviously used in #Safari, but also in #Linux products like #epiphany (#GNOMEWeb). >
So yeah, that's the last big engine on the market. (and totally alive, as maintaining an engine is hard KDE hopefully never tries to revive their own, actually they may just use WebKit…)

@rugk @danarel @switchingsocial
Not revive webkit -- revive KHTML. Development has mostly stopped in 2017, with projects moving to webkit instead.

@clarjon1 @switchingsocial @danarel that was my point: if WebKit is a fork of KHTML (which was new to me BTW, so thanks FYI), then just work on WebKit and use it. (especially if engines are similar you'd have trouble maintaining one)

And when it stopped in 2017, there is hardly any chance one can catch up all that technical dept. Web engines are hard. (when they want to power real browsers)

@rugk @danarel @switchingsocial

I understand that point, but I personally would feel better if the development continued and was brought up to speed, so that there's more choice in different projects.

This way browser devs will have more choice, there's less vendor lock-in, etc.

Remember when every site was "optimized" for IE, and the amount of issues that caused, because it was pretty much the only real game on the browser market for a while until netscape et al went free like IE did? We're only down to two major rendering engines currently, as Edge is no longer being independent, Gecko and WebKit/Blink (Google's version of Webkit)

Perhaps I'm in the minority, but I like having options, I like seeing creative competition as folks come up with interesting solutions to problems and it saddens me to see that die out and be replaced by corporate run softwares.

@clarjon1 @danarel @switchingsocial

I'd still say three. Blink is nowadays very different from WebKit, you hardly see a common ground anymore.

So you have three. Actually, did you read my linked #browserDiversity article? Because it's exactly about your point, and I agree:

(Just developing #KHTML seems like a lost ship to me now.)

@rugk @switchingsocial @danarel

I had started it a bit when you posted it, and was halfway thru when you posted, and I resonate with this article's text.

As much as I disliked making things work in IE, it still was nice to have around.
@clarjon1 @rugk @danarel @switchingsocial

I really agree with you. But firefox is hardly catching up with Google browser. And webkit is lagging way behind them. Right now, I think it would be better if webkit-gtk would be updated to actually be part of the game instead of splitting the few resources there are (aka developers willing to work on a minority web engine).

@danyspin97 @clarjon1 @switchingsocial @danarel

Firefox is catching up. Actually, it is in some spaces even ahead of Chrome/ium. (WebExtension APIs are much better e.g.; and they continue developing #Servo, which will be the next great engine)

Don't know details about WebKit though.

@rugk @danarel @switchingsocial @danyspin97

Honestly, I've been finding that there are a growing number of Google services that behave better in Firefox than in Chrome.

Yes, they *load* faster in chrome, but actually using them feels a lot nicer in Firefox.

eg Google Keep. Loading in my notes takes ages in Chrome and even locks up the UI even tho it's super snappy in Firefox, despite time to initially render is a little longer on Firefox.
@rugk @danarel @switchingsocial @clarjon1

I am using a webkit-gtk browser right now and it's fast as Firefox was years ago (pre-Servo).

I don't want Firefox because it's massive. And I don't want to compile it (I'm using a Source based distro).

webkit-gtk lets you instead use whatever frontend you might like to have. What could be more unix-ish way of having a browser?

I still cheer on Firefox, as it's the only real competitor of Chrome(ium).

@danyspin97 @clarjon1 @switchingsocial @danarel

Yes I also use sometime use #epihany (based on #WebKit) and it is indeed fast. However, that's mostly because a) it has less features (and some web features still miss) and b) it has no add-ons. (Try your main browser without add-ons and you'll see how fast it is.)

Also Servo is not yet in Firefox, they only added _some_ parts in #Quantum.
And it's still fast. (can't really compare it)

@danyspin97 @clarjon1 @switchingsocial @danarel Also the whole "How fast is browser XY?" annoys me. It's kinda of a silly discussion – all of them are usually fast. All of them get slower with many add-ons. (except adblockers that make it faster usually)


If you notice it (like I do with Webkit) than something's off though. And some pages have rendering issues so I am really not happy with current Webkit-gtk.
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