Saturday, May 15, 2010

Diaspora Focusing on P2P, Shunning S2S

A profile page within the social network serv...Image via Wikipedia
I sent an e-mail to the guys at OneSocialWeb asking them about their involvement with the Diaspora team.
Does OWS have plans to reach out to Diaspora to work on federation and specifications with them? I've noticed that StatusNet's OStatus fills a very similar role, as well. Could you involve them, as well? And then there's GNU Social ....
I'd really hate to see so much work going on with the same purpose (federated, Free social networking) but end up with incompatible servers and clients.
Anyway, thanks for all the hard and wonderful work.
Here was the response.
We got in touch with them (Diaspora) but at this stage it seems they are looking into a peer-to-peer approach using Gnu encryption (GPG). So, on a technical level, our projects are quite different. We will however keep in touch with them, like we are with the get6d guys, the GnuSocial mailing list, the other XMPP efforts, and the work at the W3C.
I personally think that competition is good. I don't see it as competition in fact, more as various groups experimenting with different ideas. They are so many ways to solve this: P2P vs client-server, HTTP only vs XMPP, Atom/AS vs RDF, OpenID&OAuth vs +SSL, End to end encryptions, DRM, etc etc ... I'm sure that out of these various attempts, some good ideas and concepts will emerge. It will be then the responsibility of the bigger players & standard committees to put some order in there.
At our level, we are actively engaged with the XMPP community and the W3C Social Web working group. So I'm confident that we can converge towards a good set of protocols in the near future.
Cheers and thank you for your ongoing support !
It appears that we now have very many competing projects. I hope one of them makes it. I'm much more optimistic about S2S for the average user than I am about P2P. Very few people leave their computers on all the time, a requirement for this type of communication if it's peer to peer. Server to server seems much more likely to enable social interaction when one of the parties isn't available.


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