I don't see what is being addressed here other than Twitter didn't make the client be your web server (push vs pull).
Sure the decentralized approach liberates the data. But without critical mass what good is that data?
Maybe the example is just not compelling enough to illustrate the real point here?
It's quite a bit more than "mak[ing] the client be your web server." It's about independent publishing.
- UserA starts a feed at dat://UserA, and publishes stuff in Activity Streams format
- UserB follows dat://UserA
- UserB comments on UserA feed: it creates dat://CommentsFromUserBonUserA, and publishes a comment in Activity Streams format there
- UserB pings UserA telling them about dat://CommentsFromUserBonUserA: UserA is naturally interested, so they just subscribe to this feed, and republishes stuff into dat://UserA
- UserC subscribes to dat://UserA. They get UserA's posts, along with UserB's comments, without every subscribing to dat://UserB. All activity about UserA is in one place, completely under UserA control, with no dependency on a centralized service
- Same can be done for mentions of UserA
This obviously assumes pinging is easy, which it isn't. Perhaps some polling of a DHT ? It also doesn't solve the issue of hashtags... but it makes dependency on centralized service less important
Web Crawling is a reliable federated system that doesn't impede user freedoms. The crawlers are so fungible that anything centralized about them doesn't really concern me.
What do you think of GNU Social? I am a fan and enjoy it.
Off topic but, I would like to thank the people who created the Decentralized Web Conference in SF in June. Really nice conference, and I look forward to the next one.
Yes definitely, the problem with the current Web is that you cant deploy sites cheaply enough. P2P tech makes domain allocation free and fast, so it can fit into a typical application's flow. (The Dat protocol also caches data really well, so read latency is less prohibitive.)
> What do you think of GNU Social? I am a fan and enjoy it.
What I know about GNU Social, I like. I think its impact will be limited because it's still the old model of federation that binds user identity & data to a specific server. But I still support it.
> Off topic but, I would like to thank the people who created the Decentralized Web Conference in SF in June
See you at the next one!
The same can largely be said of the normal web when it comes to Google, but that doesn't alter the fact that they have a monopoly. Brand recognition, economies of scale and similar underpin their position. Can a decentralized web prevent monopoly?
Two thoughts on this:
- Maybe someday we'll find a way to do fully distributed services reliably. None of the global blockchain solutions are good enough, by my standards. What we can do is remove the friction to creating competition, which the P2P stack and other techniques (like the old Web Intents spec) are for.
- I would like to see home servers become a thing. Put ten terrabytes in the corner, run a bunch of crawlers on it, include some non-public services. You can't beat google on searching the web as it exists right now, but google cant search private data.
Well that's like saying that GNU will never succeed because Windows and Mac have such huge market shares.
Obviously not true.
What I'd really like to see is decentralised web proponents (of which I'm no longer one) put out some ideas for how their model is going to support economic activity of any interesting kind. Yes, selling advertising by centralising eyeballs is shit, but show me something better.
The alternative is to either wait for capitalism to finally be over (spoiler alert: they're planning another season, starting January 20), or to get a second gig as a gardener to fund my web habit.
If a service can be destabilized by the lack of a walled garden to lock in users, then it's in society's best interest for that service to be destabilized, because that means there are other competing services that users want to use, but can't because of the size of the existing service's network effects.
The status quo of services competing mainly by the sizes of their network effects is completely hostile to innovation, experimentation, and user choice. Any efforts that could disrupt this status quo has my full support!