I've been running Tulir's bridge  for a few months now and my Facebook account gets locked out every week or so (requiring unlocking and a new password).
EDIT: Looking at the code, they use Tulir's bridge as well. I'd be..cautious about claming production level support with it due to the afore mentioned logout issue. Which is a shame since all of Tulir's bridges are high quality.
The bridgebox repo appears to be a bunch of bridges in docker containers. I wonder if it's really worth running the bridgebox and not a homeserver, versus using matrix-docker-ansible-deploy . You already need the VPS space.
The bridgebox is actually designed to run on a raspberry pi, my plan is to give each user a free Pi to run their bridgebox.
Send me a note on matrix, I'd love to chat! @eric:nova.chat
One other Q: What about E2E security? Will you implement this for the comms between the bridges and the browsers? As I understand it I would run the bridges myself so it would make sense to have everything encrypted.
I've been hanging out in the mautrix-facebook room for a while and as far as I can tell it's different for almost everyone. Some people have no problems, some people just can't use it. Personally, I had minimal problems at first, then no problems for a while, and then after upgrading am in the current state. Other people simply logged into facebook normally from their remote server (i.e using SSH tunneling or something) and then their problems were resolved.
I'd give it a shot for a few days and see if you have a lot of trouble; It's not hard to disable a bridge if it becomes too much hassle. Personally I just add another character to my password and off I go the races, so the occasional five minutes of work for not having to deal with the app on my phone makes it worth it.
Wow $10/mo?! Pidgin was the multi-network chat tool, and was free! I'd understand $10 one-time, but not per month. And the price may go up? No thanks
1) It's less likely to be abandoned.
2) It has less (hopefully no) incentive to secretly monetize me or my data.
3) Instead of being a side project for a handful of people, this has the potential to be the full-time project for at least one person.
I was a heavy Pidgin user too, and when you're in an arms race with Google, Facebook, etc. (all of whom are trying to keep their gardens walled in), the work becomes too much for volunteers. Much of it is not rewarding.
Pidgin was gradually and quietly abandoned, so I'm not excited about the prospect of using something that has a similar fate.
A $10 monthly fee may severely limit it's use --- and the less it is used, the more likely it is to be abandoned.
Personally, I think a $10 annual fee would be more reasonable but finding the magic sweetspot between users and dollars is a market research topic.
It's not an assumption. I have been burned by FOSS (e.g. libpurple and Rambox) that were abandoned. I have not yet been burned by any paid software. The latter is much, much rarer. If you charge anything and have users, you can sell the business to someone who will keep it going, even if you're not cash-flow positive yet.
> A $10 monthly fee may severely limit it's use --- and the less it is used, the more likely it is to be abandoned. Personally, I think a $10 annual fee would be more reasonable
You may serious underestimate how difficult it is to reverse-engineer and maintain client libraries for messaging services. $10/user/year is not reasonable.
Someone could sustain themselves with just 300 users at that rate, and they could live comfortably with 1,000 users.
For something I use for hours every day for work, $10/mo is absolutely nothing.
That's certainly true, but not at the same scale as FOSS.
> Personally, I think a $10 annual fee would be more reasonable but finding the magic sweetspot between users and dollars is a market research topic.
Sure, but it's much harder to bring 10$ a year to a 10$ a month price than the reverse. In one case you will make people angry and assuredly lose many customer, in the other, you may just gain more.
People always forget also the cost to support people over a "beta" software. That cost goes up the more customer he get, thus starting with less customers is certainly a good way to limit the amount of time spent on answering to support request.
I wonder if libpurple just needs to be updated to support cloud services/various chat apis. I’d be willing to bootstrap that project...
All of the popular chat services (FB Messenger, What's App, Snapchat, Signal, etc) are very keen on remaining closed systems.
They don't have an API. The bridges for these are basically dirty hacks that patch Electron apps with some hooks, use web versions (What's App) or even Android apps directly.
There is no "just" here.
Facebook MQTT: https://github.com/dequis/purple-facebook
Skype web: https://github.com/EionRobb/Skype4pidgin
Pidgin is a life saver.
Now everything's proprietary and hostile to unofficial clients. Most Matrix bridges have to do stuff like scrape the webapps to work.
The recent Twitch/Reddit/Twitter bans should only magnify this effect. Congrats Eric! I'm very excited to use this.
People still use Facebook after multiple proven privacy scandals. If that doesn't push people off the platform, what will?
It's a bad catch 22.
It's a very international group, with real-life weekly meetups in several cities. The management structure is like Wikipedia/Wikimedia. The website itself needs a lot of work though.
If BeWelcome gets the network effect it needs, I'm very hopeful that BeVolunteer could start more projects. (BeBook? BeMail? BeChat?)
There's no closed "developer's circle", it's an open group that anyone can join - I just made an account about a month ago.
It's not about how something is build, it's about what is done with it.
I'm also pretty sure that the "silent majority" is pretty happy to have toxic people out and it's probable that they will move to these services. Giving the same problem to other stakeholders.
Additionally, decentralized services probably won't receive billions in funding.
1) much better name for a matrix client than the others, Nova sounds cool.
2) $10/month is more than Disney+ per month. Could there be the option to accept a $5/month for desktop only and a separate $5/month for mobile? Then a combined $10/month for both?
Massive kudos on it looking good (even if electron) and doing Matrix stuff nicely.
I will be watching this closely, especially when Signal is ready to go.
Would love to have iMessage working from my windows computer
And Whatsapp requires whatsapp web so you need to keep the client running on your phone 24/7 or run it in an Android VM which is pretty heavy.
And finally the whole Matrix experience is a bit lacking IMO. It doesn't really do 1:1 chats so every time someone chats with you you get a 'room invite' from the bridge, which you have to accept, and all those old rooms stay forever cluttering up the system.
I wouldn't mind outsourcing all that work, but $10/month is a lot.. Good idea though! There's definitely a need for this, which is why I've been looking into it too. I'm just getting so sick of all these different chat apps screaming for attention all day, each with their own difficulties. Some don't work on the desktop, others only work on 1 client at a time. And each milking as much data as they can. Why can't people just stick to IRC :)
The issue is that most of the services Matrix tries to bridge to are basically hostile entities (except IRC and Slack). I'm honestly shocked how well Matrix bridging works when you take that into consideration -- and unsurprisingly the Slack and IRC bridges are the nicest ones to use. But I will admit that I think Matrix's marketing around bridging as being core to their chat model is a bit of a stretch -- while all of the bridges do work, most are a bit dodgy (and some require you to self-host).
For instance, the Signal bridge is actually a hacked-up version of the Signal Chrome App with a bunch of hooks added so that they can simulate you doing things through the web app. There is a project that uses libsignal-service-java directly to create a more usable CLI and DBus interface, but unfortunately they haven't switched to using that (and if it became widely used, Moxie would probably decide to block it). Whatsapp is probably similarly hacked-together.
> It doesn't really do 1:1 chats so every time someone chats with you you get a 'room invite' from the bridge, which you have to accept, and all those old rooms stay forever cluttering up the system.
Maybe this is bridge-specific, but I have several long-lived IRC 1:1 chats that are all in one room. There's nothing stopping a bridge from doing this correctly (as far as I know). As for old rooms cluttering up the system, I believe that (non-joinable) rooms with no members get garbage collected but I might be mistaken.
Most bridges require your own session on the third-party service (sometimes provided by a session cookie in the config file) and then invite you to a private room for each conversation through that service. There is no concept of a login UI for a third-party service, nor is there a concept of "ghost" users for third-party service users (let's say I have a friend that is both on Matrix as well as IRC and Signal - I want him to be considered as a single entity on the UI, and no need to have "rooms" for one-to-one chats with third-party users.
Also, the API token is hard to get and it says you might get banned for using the 'xoxo-' token. Though I did it anyway :)
I was a big fan of Slack until they dropped their IRC bridges, but unfortunately some communities I'm on are still only on there.
Is this the Eric of Pebble fame? I have a lot of warm feelings here, I actually still wear one. :)
While I prefer open communication protocols and clients, the reality seems to be the world has sadly moved on from this. Hopefully Nova will be of as high quality as Pebble was.
How did you get around this? Or is it not an issue afterall?
On the other hand, if they're expecting individuals to pay for this (at $10/mo and that's during beta) just like, because, that's going to be a challenging market.
Private, secure communication (with a decent brand and ui) should be accessible to everyone by now. Signal does a great job of filling the void for now but if they fail or are blocked by a country or community, the application interface itself is not a protocol to which people could easily pivot to the “gmail” of Signal.
I’m hoping that Riot’s upcoming rebrand will mark the start of this transition. We needed centralized efforts to spread usage of matrix, or even a similarly accessible protocol, but make it easy for those to create or maintain their own connection to that network. If all else fails, I guess we’ll have Syphon.
Have looked for a replacement for Adium for quite a while and Nova Chat is looking like it will be it. So much relief from not having to juggle multiple desktop chat clients and mobile notifications.
Looking forward to the upcoming features! App is getting some nice updates every few weeks.
But it’s Electron. Pass.
(Unless I find time to go figure out if it can be used with other Matrix clients…)
>NovaChat is not a browser/Chromium solution that opens many tabs to different chat networks like Franz, Shift or Station
It supports iMessage as well, isn't based on Matrix and is completely local.
Ever since my Blackberry had my emails, SMS, and BBMs (iMessage-like service for BlackBerry users) all in the same inbox with threads, I have been dying for a service where I can just say, "I want to send a message to [person]," and let the app decide how to contact them or continue my existing thread.
I have paid for Franz and Station, both of which were unusable garbage, and now use Hamsket (a fork or Rambox).
Video calling, especially e2ee direct communication, would probably be unstable and if poor quality if you require the call to go through an extra translation hop.
Chat support has been getting better though, bridge performance has increased a lot over the past few months. If the web app for your bridge of choice supports calling, I see no theoretical limitation in implementing a call integration, though it would probably be very hard to get it working correctly.
If someone need my help in creating native Chat UI please let me know, I can help to do it with Sciter:
It could be purely native application or something along the lines of Sciter Quark ( https://quark.sciter.com )
Ram usage is currently at 12-50mb on windows, up to 90mb with 50 messages with images(unoptimized, no virtual scrolling yet).
The server will be a single binary, there is still a lot to do: pin messages, emojis, avatars, community avatar, search... i want it (server+desktop) to be done by the end of the year.