Offpunk a CLI web browser that can work offline 

Surfing the net I found an interesting project I'm sure terminal lovers will love it, and the project we're going to talk about today is called Offpunk.

Offpunk is a console web browser (CLI) and which has recently released its first version. This browser, in addition to opening web pages, it works using the Gemini protocols, Gopher and Spartan, plus read news feeds in RSS and Atom formats. 

About Offpunk

management it is done through a system of commands and keyboard shortcuts. There is a flexible system for maintaining multi-level bookmarks, subscriptions, and archived content for different MIME types, plus you can plug in your own handlers. Parsing and display of HTML pages is done using the BeautifulSoup4 and Readability libraries, In addition to the images can convert to ASCII graphics using the crappy library.

Of the characteristics that stand out from Offpunk:

  • Browse https/gemini/gopher/spartan without leaving your keyboard and without distractions
  • Integrated documentation: just type help to get the list of commands or specific help on a command.
  • Offline mode to browse cached content offline. Requested items are automatically retrieved during the next sync and added to your tour.
  • HTML pages are embellished to focus on content. Read undisturbed or view the entire page with view full.
  • RSS/Atom feeds are automatically discovered and processed as gemlogs. They can be explored with view feed and view feeds.
  • Supports "subscriptions" to a page. New content seen on subscribed pages is automatically added to your next tour.
  • Complex bookmark management across multiple lists, integrated editing, list subscription/freezing and content archiving.
  • Advanced navigation tools like toury mark(according to VF-1). Unlike AV-98, the tour is saved to disk between sessions.
  • Ability to specify external handler programs for different MIME types (use handler)
  • Non-interactive cache creation with configurable depth via the –sync command. The cache can easily be used by other software.
  • IPv6 support
  • Supports any character encoding recognized by Python
  • Cryptography: TOFU or CA server certificate validation
  • Cryptography: Broad support for client certificates if an opensslbinary is available

To automate the execution of actions, an RC file is used that defines the script at startup. For example, through an RC file, you can automatically open the home page or download the content of some sites to view later offline.

Downloaded content is stored in the ~/.cache/offpunk/ directory as a hierarchy of .gmi and .html files, allowing you to change the content, manually clean it up, or view the pages in other programs if needed.

The project continues development of Gemini and Gopher AV-98 and VF-1 clients, created by the author of the Gemini protocol. The Gemini protocol is much simpler than the protocols used on the Web, but more functional than Gopher. The network part of Gemini resembles a very simplified HTTP over TLS (traffic is always encrypted) and the page markup is closer to Markdown than HTML.

The protocol is suitable for creating lightweight and compact hypertext sites without the complications inherent in the modern Web.

While the Spartan protocol is designed to transfer documents in the Gemini format, but it differs in the organization of network interaction (does not use TLS) and extends the capabilities of Gemini with means of exchanging binary files and supports sending data to the server.

Finally for those interested in knowing more about it browser, they should know that the program is written in Python and is released under the BSD license. You can check the details In the following link.

In order to test this browser, simply open a terminal and type:

git clone https://tildegit.org/ploum/AV-98-offline.git

cd AV-98-offline

./offpunk.py

Or they can also try:

python3 offpunk.py

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  1.   Diego chertoff said

    That completes the Review! I would love to see the network deflate a bit, and the Gemini protocol seems very suitable (although it is unlikely to happen).