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15 February 2013, 12:51

PeerJS enables WebRTC browser-to-browser banter

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PeerJS is a new open source JavaScript library and associated server which is designed to allow web applications running on different systems to contact each other. The developers say that PeerJS completes WebRTC, as the video connection protocol says nothing about how WebRTC-based clients should locate users to connect with.

PeerJS has a simple API allowing a peer connection to be made with three lines of code and takes care of WebRTC handshaking. To enable the clients to rendezvous, PeerJS is backed by PeerServer, a Node.js-based web server that is also open source, as well as being available through a free cloud service, PeerServer Cloud, after applying for an API key.

PeerJS is a work-in-progress though and, as of the most recent status update, is reliant on the implementation of WebRTC DataChannel and other features on the various browsers. Currently, only Chrome 26+ (Dev and Canary channel versions), but no Firefox versions, can make use of PeerJS. The developers of PeerJS say they do expect DataChannel to be in stable versions of Firefox and Chrome "in something like 2-3 months".

Documentation for the PeerJS implementation, as well as source for the MIT-licensed library and server, is available from the project's GitHub repository.


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