What is PreSearch? For the un-initiated PreSearch is, in its simplest form, an alternative search engine provider with a considerably better privacy tilt to it than something like Google or Yahoo (do people use this to search? who knows?!). If like me you have been following PreSearch for some time now you'll be aware that it operates a similar incentivized policy to that offered to Brave users. That is to say when you use PreSearch you can earn the their tokens (PRE, an ERC20 token on the ETH blockchain) to the tune of 8 per day (around 0.25 tokens per search). While this doesn't sound like a lot and looking at the price below it isn't a massive amount it is worth noting that PRE are in a similar place to where Brave was early on. They have a product but are working on building their customer base.
In addition to just earning the tokens one of the key features that PreSearch offers is the ability to stake these tokens against 'Key Words' to generate advertising income and hits for specific sites. Indeed, a lot of early adopters in the platform use this method as a way of sharing their referral links far and wide. If you're interested in learning a bit more about keyword staking check out this video.
In this article we'll look at the next stage in the evolution of the PreSearch development plan, which is a move to being truly decentralized by introduction of PreSearch nodes.
I've been consistently using PreSearch (and their "D_" search engine) as my go to. I very much enjoy the ethos behind this project, putting privacy first. Most of you that follow my articles will also be aware that I have, in the past, enjoyed getting stuck in with running nodes for a few blockchains. I've always considered this a great way to contribute to projects and also learn a bit about decentralization along the way. So, I was happy when I received last week an invitation to be one of the Beta testers for the new PreSearch nodes and their brand new search engine.
So why a new search engine and why nodes? Great questions, here is a video the PreSearch team put together to explain a little more.
In short the move to this node base system offers two key benefits from my (users) perspective. Firstly, it offers better privacy around search data preventing this being misused and secondly, it give us another way to contribute to and earn from the eco-system.
As it standing it looks like the technical requirements for running a now are extremely low which, looking at both of the Raspberry Pi's on my desk, means that adoption shouldn't be too much of a stumbling block. In terms of the commitment (stake) of your tokens it looks like it will be 1000PRE tokens which itself is a very easy amount to achieve, given that with a referral link you can get 25PRE free and then earn up to 8 per day. They are also cheap enough right now that if you wanted to buy 1000 you're not breaking the bank and you're not likely going to be too upset if you end up deciding it isn't for you and selling again.
Running a Node
While the Node is still in Beta testing, and it is likely do a separate 'How-to' guide at a later date to set up your own node on a Raspberry Pi, I wanted to show you just how easy it is to set up currently.
For the Beta I am running the node on my Windows Desktop. I went with this because I wanted to hold off on using the Pi until the final release, when it will be on 24/7. For now I just run the node for around 14hrs a day (while mining and using my computer normally).
The setup shopping list was as simple as this:
- Set up docker on windows - https://www.docker.com/
- Through a Powershell Terminal pull the latest version of the node
- Execute the command line (including my node reference) to start the node
That is it, three really simple steps.
Once up and running the node looks like the image above. You can see it actioning search requests from the gateway and then sending the info back. In terms of overhead the node is using next to no processing resources so I just set it running and then start up a miner as well and it has no impact on the PC's performance.
When having a look around the node dashboard (note this is still Beta so the final product may not look like this) we can see the staking options. It looks like even if you don't want to stake you'll be able to run a node, however, without the stake I don't think you will earn any PRE for the work. This is great because if you want to contribute but don't want to buy in you can (one less entry level barrier).
I really like how the team have built a product that has a real world use case that is applicable to almost anyone. I'm sure something like 80-90% of the world population have access to the internet or a smart phone so building something that can work for all these people is a great idea as it really opens up the market (just look at how well Brave has done!). Additionally, they have started by building in a use for the tokens as well which means these have tangible value be it for advertising or network security (staking).
As I mentioned earlier if you are interested in taking a look at PreSearch and using it as your own search engine you are welcome to use my referral link you will get 25PRE to start you off on your journey and, once you've made another 25 for yourself I'll get a 25PRE bonus (so thanks in advance). A word of warning though is don't try and game the system and put random searches in to generate profits, they have some pretty fickle algorithms that can slap a ban on you for misbehaving. Withdrawals start at 1000PRE, you can also buy some and send it in if you need to.
Here is my link, go ahead and try it for yourself: https://presearch.org/signup?rid=1704854
Thank you very much for reading, I hope like me you're looking forward to running your own Node for PreSearch post-Beta. Good Luck y'all!