re: the alternet: a roadmap for a different internet
ok, so let's take stock of where we are toward an alternet:
- mesh: i think freedombone is a solid solution on two fronts: being able to make nodes of commodity hardware (ex: junk laptops, salvaged routers) as well as having a solid hardware blueprint with the beaglebone.
- p2p network: hypercore and ipfs represent powerful models of content distribution. ipfs for commons content like software libraries or permanent datasets, hypercore for the social graph. the hypercore folks are delivering some important network blocking code atm that will permit an application to map a set of moderation actions onto the network graph itself -- disconnecting from blocked peers and distributing that action across private communities, for example. that creates a powerful story for social infra.
- social dns hub: i feel activitypub is a good standard for digital identity, and it maps to an append-only data layer well. once beaker delivers a hypercore interface, it will become possible to build an activitypub-based social network that runs in a browser. hypercore over webrtc makes it possible to build pub servers that allow traditional browsers to access the network. once you have that, you could go so far as to port the masto ui and it would work. of course that's not enough -- you need a new app to adapt to this new context. it can use attested protocols like activitypub to simplify http gateways, but it also bears new responsibilities such as mapping moderation actions onto the swarm in order to block peers or maintain an allow-list for private subnetworks. then, a plugin system allows an ecosystem of type plugins to expand the sorts of content peers can distribute through a UI, from shitposts to files to video streams.
- hardware pipeline: i am not this type of engineer but here is what i am thinking: a battery-powered beaglebone black flashed with freedombone. it runs a hypercore and ipfs daemon and peers a bundle of starting apps via links in a profile where the router identifies itself. the hypercore daemon replicates these apps but only sparsely replicates peer content, so that peers can find eachother through the mesh node but must exchange updates directly. i think i can prototype this sort of thing but it will take time and money.
- guild: union advocates and organizers are regularly sacked from the industry with impunity. the US is a failed state. organizing at work appears to be a dead-end. we must organize our labor outside of work, but that risks our livelihoods. it is a daunting task to organize a guild, fraught with all the perils of a devshop and then some. i would like to be up to the task but imo i am not. i am increasingly of the belief that the firmer path to a guild is to organize outside of price, to seize the means of survival by producing them yourself and organizing around them directly, such that a mesh guild is supported and driven by this structure.
the alternet: a roadmap for a different internet
i want to introduce a five-part plan for a different internet: a user-owned, decentralized and highly encrypted web built up of diverse hardware that can be deployed anywhere in the world. it is the precursor to the sort of internet you could take to the stars.
here are the five parts:
- mesh network: a distributed routing system where routers distribute packets across the mesh without knowing what those packets are or who they come from. (think: batman-adv)
- p2p network: a distributed data layer for applications to utilize, so that peers can route packets knowing what they are and who they come from, so that — for example — one can build complex moderation systems. see: hypercore, ipfs.
- social dns hub: an application that acts as a frontend to a p2p package manager that can download and install applications over the mesh. a user would use this hub to download a facebook clone, for example, which is itself a decentralized application that runs inside the hub. domain names are built up by spidering the link graph of your connections and their connections, out to some configurable distance, so that you retain domain names without a global domain name registry. a google clone could apply pagerank to this set of p2p addresses to give you a perspective-based search. (the beaker browser fulfills this requirement to some extent)
- hardware pipeline: a body of tutorials and purchase points that make it easy to build or acquire mesh nodes. it should be easy to flash an old laptop into a mesh node, or to buy a completed mesh node for $20-30. (freedombone has plenty of tutorials for PCs as well as SBCs, making it a good fit for this)
- guild: a trade union or co-op devoted to upholding technical and labor standards, and to supporting the labor producing the alternet and all its upstream dependencies. these are the folks on the other side of that “buy a mesh node now” button, who also materially support labor organizing throughout the industry. without organized labor girding the alternet, it is impossible to maintain.
Shipping is too expensive for me in the UK bit if anyone in the US wants a pride flag this company is selling them for just the price of shipping
your regular reminder that censoring words l*ke th*s is actively counterproductive because it bypasses the filters that people set up for themselves
to take an innocuous example, if i use filters to block the word "orange", and you write "or*nge", you have now ensured that i will see a post that i have explicitly tried to get out of my timeline
conflict mining, imperialism
"The PlayStation War" by HeavyEyed https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nBHl0w3ni5U&t=919
for those who don't know, https://completionista.com is a great place to keep track of recipes, museum donations, etc. in the game
Yes, the better your fabric or paper mask seals, the more effective it is, but we're talking very small margins. If you want to take the extra time to get that tiny little boost, good on you! But not doing that is not "wearing masks wrong"
Let's reserve "wrong" for people whose masks are not covering both nose and mouth completely, yeah?
PSA: cloth and paper masks worn to help prevent spread of Coronavirus (and other diseases) do not need to form a seal to be effective.
They do two things:
a. capture most of the droplets you exhale/cough/sneeze out
b. slow down (and thus reduce the range of) any droplets not caught
If you have two layers of fabric covering your nose and mouth, you are wearing a fabric mask correctly.
If breath reflects off of them and escapes around the edges, that is just fine -- the bulk of the droplets were caught, and those few that leave around the edges are slowed a ton. Mission accomplished.
Misinformation on this point (most of which seems to be repeating proper fit and donning for PPE masks, which do need to form a seal) is leading people to not wear masks because they believe they are difficult or impossible to wear correctly.
not really accepting new follows, moving accounts soon. they/them
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