Beta
×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

Diaspora On Schedule, One Month In

timothy posted more than 4 years ago | from the repatriate-repatriate dept.

Privacy 90

schlick writes with word that the Diaspora project (last mentioned here several weeks back) has an update with a demo and some screen shots. Diaspora's goal: to provide social networking without the privacy invasion possibilities inherent in sites like Facebook.

cancel ×

90 comments

Sorry! There are no comments related to the filter you selected.

Privacy is dead. (1)

Luke727 (547923) | more than 4 years ago | (#32782914)

Get over it.

Re:Privacy is dead. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32782940)

Just because 4 billion trolls are willing to give out all of their information online doesn't mean I have to.

BTW - What's your SSN?

Re:Privacy is dead. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32782992)

BTW - What's your SSN?

Well, information DOES want to be free.

Re:Privacy is dead. (2, Interesting)

LaRainette (1739938) | more than 4 years ago | (#32784548)

You fail to understand what free means.
Free =/= In the hands of a few very powerful corporation who will hide it (since it represents a capital competitive advantage over the smaller, less connected companies)
That would actually be the opposite of free.

Secondly Free doesn't really Apply on data, it applies on people. For the same reason what you call information cannot WANT to be "free". People want to access information, that's very different.

Now if you think on a systemic scale : two very strong forces oppose those who want to share the information, which mean to share the power we have on information (i.e. everybody controls its own and shares the amount he wants) and those who want to OWN the information (meaning not free anymore) in order then to monetize it and sell it to those who will pay the most (BigCo) and that would be Facebook and the likes.

Finally I just wanted to underline that you, probably on purpose, mistake information and personal information.
As Tim Berners Lee and others have been advocating for quite a long time, it is critical that we share more DATA, make it more accessible to everyone. That data he was talking about is not personal data, it is anonymous statistical data that should be available to anyone who wants to study it and make something out of it.
Our governments for instance sit on piles of data that they are incapable of analysing because they don't have the time or money to do it, but they wont share it for stupid reasons.

Re:Privacy is dead. (2, Funny)

ivucica (1001089) | more than 4 years ago | (#32785960)

=/=

Oh, you mean != [wikipedia.org] ? Nice.

Re:Privacy is dead. (4, Funny)

biryokumaru (822262) | more than 4 years ago | (#32783248)

It's 547-55-5462.

Re:Privacy is dead. (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32783324)

Wow. There is internet in the afterlife!

Re:Privacy is dead. (1)

ndnspongebob (942859) | more than 4 years ago | (#32784972)

so is that a social insecurity number now?

Re:Privacy is dead. (1)

moosesocks (264553) | more than 4 years ago | (#32789404)

Shit. That's the combination on my luggage!

Re:Privacy is dead. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32794358)

Hey, that's my SSN!

Re:Privacy is dead. (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32783114)

I will illustrate the difference between a black person and a nigger.

Today at work we were very busy. Several folks were waiting on customers. This black woman comes to the back into an employee-only area, bangs on the door and window, and insists that someone on break come to help her because she didn't want to wait her turn like everyone else even though she could plainly see how busy it was. Then she makes ambiguous demands and looks down her nose at the worker when he doesn't give her exactly what she wanted. Even when she gets it, nothing is good enough for her and it has to be redone several times. Then she calls him by name repeatedly, as though it is very intimidating to know that she can read a name tag. Then she leaves in a huff without so much as a thank-you or even a perfunctory courtesy.

That, folks, is a nigger. No one can do that without ever thinking that maybe there is something wrong with treating people that way quite like a nigger woman. Black men, even the ones who are niggers, are still men and therefore have at least some kind of a sense of justice. Not this woman. Nothing but entitlement mentality combined with "my time is more important than any other customer's, and this is a business so they will kiss my ass no matter what, so i better take advantage as much as I can. God I love a captive audience that is forced to kiss my ass no matter how unreasonable I am."

I saw the man who was with her. I am torn between feeling sorry for him since living with a bitch like that is one of the purest forms of living hell, and feeling like it serves him right for having such horrible taste in women and then being dumb enough to stay with her. I only had to endure several minutes of her bitchiness. He might be with her the rest of his life.

Re:Privacy is dead. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32783356)

You mean you had to actually work? I hope you got overtime.

I don't understand (5, Insightful)

deathtopaulw (1032050) | more than 4 years ago | (#32782926)

How can you have a website where you broadcast your most intimate thoughts and personality traits to hundreds of people willingly at the same time and still retain privacy? Or are they just vowing to not sell our info to advertisers? This would be stupid if they wanted the website to last more than a few seconds without a subscription service.

Re:I don't understand (5, Informative)

alangerow (610060) | more than 4 years ago | (#32782986)

Because the system will be decentralized. You can control your own seed, meaning your own data, and who it gets shared with. They aren't making a Facebook clone. Actually, there will be Facebook interaction, so you can host your own profile and connect with Facebook users ... it's listed in their timeline if you actually read their update.

Re:I don't understand (1)

sznupi (719324) | more than 4 years ago | (#32783274)

How do you control what other people, "who it gets shared with", do with your own data?

Re:I don't understand (5, Informative)

T Murphy (1054674) | more than 4 years ago | (#32783440)

The same way you control what people do with data you put anywhere else on the internet: you don't. The point is you get to pick who does get to see your data, unlike on Facebook where you unwittingly share all your data whenever you play a game, or visit a partner website, or they change their policies and make previously private data public. If you could have 100% complete control it would be called anti-social networking, I suppose.

The big deal isn't that your data is magically safe, but that all sharing of that data is entirely on your terms.

Re:I don't understand (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32783898)

And if you have the kinda of 'friends' that you can't trust to not re-share your data, then don't share with them in the first place.

Personally, I'll be implementing a 3 strikes policy - if a friend re-shares any of my personal data (not general public webstuff) 3 times, they will be blocked.

Re:I don't understand (2, Insightful)

arctanx (1187415) | more than 4 years ago | (#32784104)

If you can't even trust your own friends with your data, what business does your data have being on the Internet? Even with email in modern times, people usually have the courtesy not to publish private correspondence. (Except when they're dealing with celebrities like Steve Jobs or rms, when they sometimes [engadget.com] forget [blogspot.com] .)

Actually (4, Interesting)

arctanx (1187415) | more than 4 years ago | (#32784148)

I should expand on that because there is a legitimate concern here. One big problem I had with Facebook is that friends from completely disparate groups can share information about you without your control.

For example, unless you're a completely boring person and disable the ability for people to see your tagged photos and the ability for them to post on their wall, the photos and stories about what happened when you got drunk last night can easily be presented to your boss or whoever else. Maybe you're not comfortable with this.

What I would really like to see in Diaspora is a way to segregate users thoroughly. Facebook let you set different access levels to your wall for different groups of friends -- I'd like you to be able to partition your wall for different types of friends, or even moderate posts and photos before a particular group gets to see them. Thanks to the open source nature and 3rd party applications, I expect that that will be possible.

And that will be great.

Re:Actually (1)

skyride (1436439) | more than 4 years ago | (#32784828)

Heres a solution and it doesn't even require a new technology; don't add your boss on facebook. Quite frankly its none of his business what you do in your free time.

Although then again, I personally only log on to facebook maybe once every couple of weeks as I just don't see the appeal of telling every person with the remotest social connection to me all about the most intimate details of my private life.

Re:Actually (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32788036)

A rose by any other name... Or, if it walks like a duck, quacks like a duck and... You get the idea...

Re:Actually (0)

moosesocks (264553) | more than 4 years ago | (#32789410)

One big problem I had with Facebook is that friends from completely disparate groups can share information about you without your control.

This is an issue in the real world, always has been, and always will be. People talk about other people, often times behind their backs. Deal with it.

Re:Actually (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32793256)

I always thought about that too! It'd be really nice to control exactly what portions are shown where. Heck, I'd be fine with having the option to make something private (where only the owner of the tag and the user can see it) or public (where everyone on your wall or who can see your tagged pictures) can see it. This way, your tag or your wall posting does not get deleted, but rather highly moderated.

Re:I don't understand (4, Insightful)

SilverHatHacker (1381259) | more than 4 years ago | (#32783000)

It's GPG encrypted, for one thing. Also, the info-sharing settings actually work, and don't get changed by default every couple months. As far as funding goes, so far the plan is to offer a paid hosting service, or let you run your own server.

Re:I don't understand (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32783010)

Would you expect mail servers to expose to the universe who is in your contact list etc? Just because people want to push certain information to their contact list doesn't mean that they want the world to be able to pull it or accept that the server can monetize all available info in exchange for the service.

Re:I don't understand (1)

oldhack (1037484) | more than 4 years ago | (#32783096)

Haven't thought this through, but P2P with multiple handle trackers (like Pirate Bay for torrents) combined with PGP auth/encryption seems a good strategy for such a project.

Re:I don't understand (1)

Flyerman (1728812) | more than 4 years ago | (#32783148)

I would pay a subscription for that.

Re:I don't understand (1)

Shihar (153932) | more than 4 years ago | (#32783704)

Is it really so hard to envision? On one side of the scale you have email. On the other side you have Twitter. Make a social networking site more like email in terms off privacy. Sure, emails can still get out but they require a beach of trust from a friend, and even then they are unlikely to get into the hands of someone damning like your boss.

People don't want privacy in the strictest sense of the word on a social networking site. They want control, and they want to trust that they can keep control easily. This is where Facebook fails. Facebook while their recent pull backs have given you the ability to keep control over most data, they relentlessly are trying to pry you open. Most people who worry about such things just don't trust them anymore.

If the only things it is safe to share on a social networking site are things safe to share in a meeting at work, most people are not going to be sharing much. There needs to be a way to share with friends without exercising the same kind I'd self censorship that you impose during a meeting with your boss.

Re:I don't understand (2, Insightful)

LaRainette (1739938) | more than 4 years ago | (#32784560)

The idea is to broadcast the part of your life you agree to, and not the rest.

What about elgg? (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32782930)

It has been around for a while.
http://elgg.org/

It looks good. (1, Informative)

Securityemo (1407943) | more than 4 years ago | (#32782932)

I don't have the networking expertise to comment on scaling or load issues, but at least this looks usable and practical enough that people would actually use it. I also like the whole host-it-wherever-you-like angle; when I first heard about this I was worried it would be like an insecure version of freenet, with content being hosted in a constant cache/request loop betwen users.

Re:It looks good. (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32783172)

Re: "practical enough that people would actually use it" -- define "people". The fact that you compared Diaspora to Freenet almost says enough about which people will go to the trouble of using it. For better or worse, most people do not care enough about privacy to use Freenet or Diaspora. Folks are pissed off at Facebook, yes, but not because Facebook is overly centralized, rather because Facebook has made dumb decisions re: what to do with all that centralized data. Theoretically, something like Diaspora can solve these problems by decentralizing, but is there the remotest possibility that the majority of Facebook users would move over to it for that theoretical reason? No, not at all. If any significant number of people leave Facebook, it will be for another centralized and easy-to-use service, just one with a slightly stronger-seeming commitment to privacy.

Re:It looks good. (1)

Securityemo (1407943) | more than 4 years ago | (#32783314)

Perhaps.

Meanwhile... (5, Interesting)

dominion (3153) | more than 4 years ago | (#32782938)

Work on Appleseed has also been progressing rapidly. In the past month, we've added internationalization, theming, and an MVC+plugin framework. You can see our revised roadmap in the svn:

http://svn.appleseedproject.org/trunk/_documentation/ROADMAP.TXT [appleseedproject.org]

Here's my public Appleseed profile using an early version of the new theme:

http://developer.appleseedproject.org/profile/michael.chisari [appleseedproject.org]

Remote logins, remote friends connections, remote messaging, journals, photos, discussion groups, sophisticated node control, ACL and privacy controls and more are all working, and will be refined in the coming releases, along with all new features like one-click server upgrades, search, micro-blogging, and more.

Michael Chisari
Appleseed - http://opensource.appleseedproject.org/ [appleseedproject.org]

Re:Meanwhile... (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32783370)

It's a shame your project doesn't get more attention.

The Diaspora guys' only real talent seems to be marketing that allowed them to raise a boatload of cash on vaporware hype and a catchy name.

p.s. I hope you change the name. Diaspora is a LOT cooler name than Appleseed, so they don't have to be better to get your marketshare.

Re:Meanwhile... (1, Insightful)

zeroduck (691015) | more than 4 years ago | (#32783464)

The Diaspora guys' only real talent seems to be marketing that allowed them to raise a boatload of cash on vaporware hype and a catchy name.

I think it's a little early to make that judgement. How fast are you expecting this to be developed?

Both names don't make a lot of sense to me. If I hadn't heard of either, I would have no clue what it is or what it does. Facebook is pretty damn clear. mySpace is pretty clear. Friendster is clear. Hopefully, for Diaspora, a few good hubs will emerge with better names.

Re:Meanwhile... (3, Insightful)

dominion (3153) | more than 4 years ago | (#32783648)

How fast are you expecting this to be developed?

My expectation, have been there and back again, is around 12 months of full time work for four people. This is until something is stable and usable, not what can be considered a "Facebook Killer". To be feature complete with where Facebook is *right now* will take much longer. This is, of course, assuming that their project has a solid blueprint and plan, which won't require any major rewrites or result in any major fundamental design flaws (like being spammer friendly, for instance).

Appleseed is looking at around 9 months to a year to be (basically) feature complete with Facebook, but we have the advantage of a six year head start on Diaspora. A project like this is a massive undertaking, anyone who's released code can tell you that. It's unfortunate that supporters have gotten the idea that the product that will be out in September will be anything but Alpha quality. The interesting thing is to see how Diaspora deals with it's prospective users getting antsy.

Both names don't make a lot of sense to me.

The names of the project don't have to make sense to anyone except for people running servers, really. Can you tell me, off hand, what a Joomla or a Drupal is? Users of distributed social networking hubs only have to know that lolcatfans.tk and havardalumni.edu are compatible with the broader open social network.

Michael Chisari
The Appleseed Project - http://opensource.appleseedproject.org/ [appleseedproject.org]

Re:Meanwhile... (2, Insightful)

priegog (1291820) | more than 4 years ago | (#32784096)

From what I gather from the Appleseed site, they are different things (with some overlap), so I don't know why they'd need to "compete" with eachother.
In an ideal world, social networking would be what the diaspora guys are trying to do. In the real world (where not everyones cares or even wants to care about running some piece of software), I think Appleseed has a concept that would be much easier to take over facebook et-al.
They're both great concepts, and in the end I believe there's a place for both. Specially if diaspora is planning on making it "interoperable" (whatever that means, but I take it to mean to act as a client for other sites), maybe the utopic social networking scene will end up being some sort of combination of the 2 (like, people who are more tinfoil-hatty will run their own (diaspora) seed, and the rest who just don't give a $%% will create an account in their "local" (city, school, geeky friend's) server (running Appleseed), and everything will Just Work

Michael, maybe you could try and get in contact with the diaspora guys (since they're just starting to code and all) so that you can make sure this future is possible (making much more likely for this idea of "open social network" to happen), instead of what happens to most FOSS projects that try to do similar things (fragment the market and make all of them unpopular as a result)?

Re:Meanwhile... (1)

priegog (1291820) | more than 4 years ago | (#32784200)

Oh, and naturally, by also making the file formats interoperable so as to make migrating from one system to the other painless.

Re:Meanwhile... (3, Informative)

dominion (3153) | more than 4 years ago | (#32785072)

Michael, maybe you could try and get in contact with the diaspora guys (since they're just starting to code and all) so that you can make sure this future is possible (making much more likely for this idea of "open social network" to happen)

There's a summit coming up where all the open source projects focusing on distributed social networking will be getting together to discuss that. Appleseed and Diaspora will be there (along with a bunch more). Should be very interesting!

Michael Chisari
The Appleseed Project - http://opensource.appleseedproject.org/ [appleseedproject.org]

Re:Meanwhile... (1)

priegog (1291820) | more than 4 years ago | (#32785650)

Oh. Great, then :)

Re:Meanwhile... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32787828)

"p.s. I hope you change the name. Diaspora is a LOT cooler name than Appleseed, so they don't have to be better to get your marketshare." Are you fucking kidding me? Seriously? Diaspora is one of the lamest names I've heard in a long time. It means nothing, and isn't catchy.

Re:Meanwhile... (1)

AHuxley (892839) | more than 4 years ago | (#32783986)

Try and add video flash chat too eg stickam, tinychat like.
No need for an external app thats OS dependant then :)

Re:Meanwhile... (1)

De Lemming (227104) | more than 4 years ago | (#32790290)

Support this project, I did: http://www.indiegogo.com/The-Appleseed-Project [indiegogo.com]

Appleseed is a lot more near completion than Diaspora is. They are already working for 6 years on it, and currently have a working prototype running on test servers.

Diaspora is now saying how their demo is "pretty fast" with message passing. They do show 6 connected servers in the video, but there is only one active user. And they never talk about scaling up (to thousands/millions of users). Scalability should be a factor considered from the start for this kind of application. They don't mention anything related to it in their "road map," instead they have items like "Implement awesome user interface."

I'm not trying to ridicule Diaspora here, actually I also donated to them. I would love to see a decentralized and open source alternative to Facebook. But I think Appleseed is much more ahead.

So for all the money the Diaspora guys collected for just presenting an idea, I think the Appleseed guys also deserve to get some funds to continue working on their project.

Personal web server? (5, Insightful)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 4 years ago | (#32782966)

The wiki article describes Diaspora as an open source personal web server, but for a lot of people their home machine, if they have one, is about the most insecure place to put things. For a lot of other people they have a work machine they never install stuff on, and an iphone, on which the userland belongs to Steve Jobs.

I have a personal web server. It serves http and rss. But I am not normal and I can't see myself installing this thing.

Re:Personal web server? (4, Insightful)

Rotworm (649729) | more than 4 years ago | (#32783046)

I've always imagined it would roll out in a manner similar to Wordpress. You can host your own by installing from either source or package (if offered by your distribution). Or you can sign-up for an account at their hosted service. IANAC (I am not a cryptographer) but I guess the hosted service is still secure due to the GPG implementation.

Re:Personal web server? (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32783056)

I've spoken to the devs, there will be hubs. Think wordpress.com vs wordpress. You can host it yourself, or at one of many locations. So they cater to both audiences, and you can always move your stuff off the hub onto your own box, or a server you have, whenever. Contrast with Facebook :)

Re:Personal web server? (4, Funny)

EdIII (1114411) | more than 4 years ago | (#32783368)

Contrast with Facebook :)

Sure.

1) Can I farm till 3am?
2) What about all them chickens that need feeding?
3) Treasure on Treasure Island does NOT find itself
4) Will I be able to fight and rob other people into submission while building a mafia empire?
5) Can I farm till 3am?

Re:Personal web server? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32783460)

1) Can I farm till 3am?
2) What about all them chickens that need feeding?
3) Treasure on Treasure Island does NOT find itself
4) Will I be able to fight and rob other people into submission while building a mafia empire?
5) Can I farm till 3am?

I'm so thankful I didn't understand any of that.

Re:Personal web server? (2, Insightful)

darrylo (97569) | more than 4 years ago | (#32783686)

Contrast with Facebook :)

Sure.

1) Can I farm till 3am?

People may think this is funny, but there's a metric *ssload of truth there.

While Diaspora may still be successful, Diaspora and all of the other social networking wannabe's will never, ever, be as successful as facebook if they don't have the equivalent mindcrack. IMO, a huge part of fb's success is not due to plain "social networking", but to the totally inane mindcrack games that sucks on peoples' souls: like farmville, castle age, mafia wars, etc., etc..

Note to Diaspora, Google Me, and all other social networking wannabe's: if you want to achieve facebook-level success, you need to have soul-sucking mindcrack games.

Re:Personal web server? (2, Insightful)

ardle (523599) | more than 4 years ago | (#32784038)

...or a plugin for same....

Re:Personal web server? (1)

siddesu (698447) | more than 4 years ago | (#32784436)

1) Can I farm till 3am?

Yep, you're welcome to come to my small ranch any day of the week. Pigs, goats, vegetables, grapes, various fruits, tasty cheese - and you only farm from dawn to dusk, after dark we have a party by the fire, and, if it is clear, some abuse of my telescopes. You coming?

Re:Personal web server? (1)

theshowmecanuck (703852) | more than 4 years ago | (#32785098)

I am curious about this myself. Does this mean if you host it yourself, that you have to keep you home machine on all the time? If you home machine is a laptop, does that mean your site is offline every time you are carrying it around or are away from an internet connection? Hosting a server on your machine by necessity opens your machine to more security issues (as we know). Also, if you choose to put your site/profile on a hub/remote server, who pays for the remote server. It costs money to connect to the internet. It costs a lot to connect a server with many peoples' profiles on it. And what about redundancy of the 'hub' etc? Anyway, who pays for the 'hub' and how is it paid for? One of the reasons people use facebook is that there is no charge (aside from the hidden one of exposing your data that apparently most people who use it don't care about).

Re:Personal web server? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32783142)

Wordpress is the same, and there are services like Wordpress.com that offer turnkey hosting.

Re:Personal web server? (3, Insightful)

arctanx (1187415) | more than 4 years ago | (#32783344)

for a lot of people their home machine, if they have one, is about the most insecure place to put things.

Your implication is that their data is safer hosted elsewhere than on their own computers, but this is mixing two separate issues.

Home machines are "insecure" in that lots of people have trojans and malware. If this is the case, it doesn't matter what service you're using be it Facebook or a Diaspora seed on your own machine or hosted elsewhere. The malware controllers own you.

The point of Diaspora is to prevent the à la carte approach to private information which Facebook makes available to advertisers because they host the data. It's a systematic breach of privacy which is being solved, not an incidental one due to insecure computers. Given the nature of the project, I expect that the commercial/ad-supported Diaspora seed providers will compete over just how tightly they'll keep your seed locked down from any third parties.

good luck (3, Insightful)

pat sajak (1368465) | more than 4 years ago | (#32783110)

i wish them the best (and will sign up when i can) but i can't help but think this will fail hard. the vast majority of facebook users are not concerned with privacy, rather they actively seek to do away with it. they want to make sure each of their 700 friends knows every inconsequential detail of their daily lives; facebook provides them with the platform to do this, diaspora likely will not. diaspora may find a niche but i can't see it taking a significant dent out of facebook's market share.

Re:good luck (5, Insightful)

Saeed al-Sahaf (665390) | more than 4 years ago | (#32783190)

the vast majority of facebook users are not concerned with privacy

This is a point that seems lost on most Slashdotters: Most of the people that use Facebook are quite happy with its "privacy" rules. They willingly supply personal information, and have the expectation that it will be spread about. Thus, Facebook is mostly a problem for those that don't use it.

Re:good luck (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32783376)

> Facebook is mostly a problem for those that don't use it.

Which is good.

There is nothing worse/difficult than trying to steal people from the market leader.
If they provide a service for a new group of people, they are a winner.
(assuming those peple actually need and like the service, of course)

Re:good luck (1)

arctanx (1187415) | more than 4 years ago | (#32783388)

Great point. In my mind there are two classes of privacy though: how private you want to be from your friends, and how private you want to be from third parties, advertisers, government statistics and facial recognition profiling, whatever. With Facebook these classes are essentially the same, whereas Diaspora will provide the opportunity to separate the two.

Sure, lots of people love to spread mundane information about themselves amongst their friends and that's not going to change. Given the opportunity though (which they haven't really had), I'll be interested to see if some people start thinking "well this Diaspora thing works quite well, and I get that third party privacy. Why not?". I'm not convinced that that will happen, but I don't think it's been fully tested yet.

Re:good luck (1)

Znork (31774) | more than 4 years ago | (#32784530)

They willingly supply personal information, and have the expectation that it will be spread about.

They willingly supply inane shallow one liners, as that's the only thing they trust facebook with. The level of 'social networking' that I see there, at least, is about what you overhear if you sit down in the middle of a bus.

Most people are quite happy with the privacy expectations of a public space; you don't have any. On the other hand, that rather severely limits its utility as a communication medium.

Facebook is mostly a problem for those that don't use it.

I'd say it's more a problem for those that would like to use it for something more worthwhile.

Re:good luck (1)

Saeed al-Sahaf (665390) | more than 4 years ago | (#32805904)

Get off your high fucking horse. If you don't like FB, don't use it. The fact that you are bleating about it here means you spend most of your time in your mom's basement masturbating to porn. Now go back to your stroking.

Re:good luck (2, Insightful)

mdmkolbe (944892) | more than 4 years ago | (#32786280)

Facebook is mostly a problem for those that don't use it.

Which is fine until clubs and organizations decide to organize via Facebook. Then you have to join if you want to stay involved. This is a trend that I've already started to notice.

Re:good luck (1)

Rotworm (649729) | more than 4 years ago | (#32783554)

This has not been my experience. Neither do I think privacy is, for the most part, predilected to a technical background as one of your commenters noted. My network of friends is small (164), but my degree was English and all of my friends are non-technical. I'd say most, though not all, are concerned with privacy.
In fact, I think they are too concerned with privacy. They have that beaten over the head zealousness when it comes to issues of privacy —I mean, they automatically think it's important without considering the issue. For instance, Amazon is very good at suggesting books if I share my preferences with them. Me, I'm okay sharing my literary preferences. They would not be because it's "personal information" and therefore sacred. Zombies.
Full disclosure: I live in Canada where the government has interferred with Facebook over privacy issues. And it was all over the news. Maybe my friends are more concerned with privacy because the news has told them to be.

This is the future. (3, Insightful)

reiisi (1211052) | more than 4 years ago | (#32783130)

The house phone will become a server, it will run asterisk, and it will host the family/indvidual website and bulletin board.

Diaspora appears to be the bulletin board part.

Phone companies really don't get it. What they should be developing is a backup system for individual servers, and default configurations for customers who prefer trusting the phone companies over trusting themselves.

The servers should be left to the community to develop, since the phone companies simly can't understand this kind of decentralization.

Re:This is the future. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32783350)

If only backup programs weren't crap (Retrospect), or so damn complicated to setup (Backup Exec), and actually performed a BMR backup properly in the first place.

Re:This is the future. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32783698)

The servers will be up to the community to develop, since the phone companies simply can't nickel and dime this kind of decentralization, hence they see no reason to work on it.

Fixed that for you.

Phone companies have yet to accept their new role in the information age: delivery of commodity bits. No longer are services separate, metered things that you charge differently based on what activity the user is doing. They get to charge for bits. That's it. They deliver information over a network. They still live in a world where they think they deliver individual services that they can maximize the price of based on user perceptions they attempt to create and manipulate.

Must suck to perceive reality as poorly as they do.

Too bad I couldn't mod you up. (1)

reiisi (1211052) | more than 4 years ago | (#32794602)

And too bad the conversation has moved on.

I don't exactly agree with you, but your AC comments are worth the reading.

Re:This is the future. (1)

coaxial (28297) | more than 4 years ago | (#32783712)

This is the future.

The house phone will become a server, it will run asterisk, and it will host the family/indvidual website and bulletin board.

If by "future" you mean "yesterday's future," then yes.

Home phone? Really? How many people own those things any more? More importantly, what are the trend lines? Why would you buy one, when cell phones are ubiquitous and work equally well inside houses? I single that out because you're describing the fabulous future of 1994.

While I like decentralization, because it means a greater ability for open standards and survivability, which in turn means better interoperability, and more innovation. What isn't required is for everyone to run their own server in their house. I have a phd in computer science, but I am not a sysadmin. I hate it. There is nothing more frustrating than sysadmining. I am not going to patch systems, debug link connections, or anything. Fuck that shit. Life is much more interesting and too short to waste on configuring routers. That's why I pay someone else to host my website. I get a website that I want, but I don't have to really do anything to keep it working. Same thing with Diaspora nodes. You create a hosting service, because no one wants to buy a damn box.

Re:This is the future. (1)

muckracer (1204794) | more than 4 years ago | (#32784680)

> Home phone? Really? How many people own those things any more?
> Why would you buy one, when cell phones are ubiquitous and work equally well inside houses?

Where I live the phone company still forces you to have and pay for a landline when you want a DSL plan. I don't even have the phone plugged in...

Re:This is the future. (1)

ivucica (1001089) | more than 4 years ago | (#32785930)

Precisely. You don't use it. You may be forced to pay for it, but you don't need it.

Re:This is the future. (1)

John Hasler (414242) | more than 4 years ago | (#32785474)

> More importantly, what are the trend lines?

Because as we all know, nothing is more important than being trendy.

Re:This is the future. (1)

Sporkinum (655143) | more than 4 years ago | (#32790422)

Home phone? Really? How many people own those things any more? More importantly, what are the trend lines? Why would you buy one, when cell phones are ubiquitous and work equally well inside houses?

You mean a cell phone with a battery that craps out in a day? You mean a cell phone that costs more than $12/month? You mean a cell phone that doesn't work worth a crap in my house? I have to pay for it anyway for my DSL, so why wouldn't I use it?

I still haven't found a compelling reason to own a cell phone. I have one that is work supplied, and my experience with it is probably the main reason I don't have one.

Re:This is the future. (1)

reiisi (1211052) | more than 4 years ago | (#32794670)

Home server isn't required?

Cell phone? Great idea, two limitations. One, the airwaves are not infinitely compressible. (Although, if INTEL had not squelched the UWB solution that would have worked, we could have a lot more headroom.)

Portable phones will be part of the future, sure. But not the chained-to-the-floor portables we have now. Toys are easy to sell, but they drive the price below the floor after the first boom.

Tools make a real market. Cell phones that depend on the ISP never get beyond being a toy. (The other limitation.)

You have to have your own data server. Maybe you contract it out. Maybe you contract it to your ISP, maybe to a competitor, maybe to a 3rd party. But if you can't control your own data at some level, you don't have a tool.

As to why the home phone should be a server, that question stands the world on its head. There is no reason to keep phones dumb. Not even financial reasons are valid any more.

Decentralization.

Re:This is the future. (1)

coaxial (28297) | more than 4 years ago | (#32807830)

Home server isn't required?

From the faq [joindiaspora.com] :

Q: Where will the data of the users be hosted? On servers you buy/rent?

A: Short answer: Where ever you like.

We think most people will use some sort of hosting provider to host their seed. This could be a traditional web host, a cloud based host, an ISP, or a friend.

For the less technically inclined, we hope to provide a one-click hosting service like Wordpress.com to make creating a seed as easy as possible.

I don't know where your "chained-to-the-floor portables we have now" comment is coming from. My laptop has 6 hour battery. An iPad has 10 hours. Not exactly chained to the floor.

As to why the home phone should be a server, that question stands the world on its head. There is no reason to keep phones dumb. Not even financial reasons are valid any more.

Let me ask it another way then. Why should anyone have a server in their home to begin with?

There's none. A hosting service, either a traditional service (i.e. you get space on a computer that runs various servers to use) or a simple service (e.g. blog hosting like wordpress.com or blogger, or even facebook) is all people need. You don't have to control these machines, as long as you can easily import and export your data to and from them. (Coincidently this where wordpress.com beats the living crap out of facebook.)

As long as you have interoperability (ideally though open standards, but that's not strictly necessary), you avoid lock in, and that's all you need to do.

Re:This is the future. (4, Insightful)

fat_mike (71855) | more than 4 years ago | (#32783834)

Your signature alone tells me about your grasp of things that the majority of people don't care about.

Asterisk is a joke in the home. The last time I checked I could get phone service for $9.95 a month and buy a cheap analog phone for $15.00. Do you really expect people to pay $830 for a 24 station analog card along with the computer and other crap they'll need to run Asterisk?

This Diaspora is nothing more than playing catch-up. Remember when you HAD to be on AOL then Craigslists was the poop, then MySpace, then Facebook and now Twitter? Its the idea and correct implementation and marketing that made those successful for the given period of time they were.

This is another project trying to collect the scraps from the tables of the big boys that will eventually be noted as, "Whatever happened to Diaspora? They haven't updated their logo contest in eight months!"

Re:This is the future. (1)

muckracer (1204794) | more than 4 years ago | (#32784694)

> Remember when you HAD to be on AOL

Thankfully...No. When others 'had' to be on AOL I was already using the Internet and thought the idea of a closed-up 'walled garden' system rather silly. I still do, but won't go into details so that certain fruit-fans won't go into collective seizures again... :-)

24 station analog card? (1)

reiisi (1211052) | more than 4 years ago | (#32794748)

640K is all the memory a user should ever need.

But, really, why a 24 station analog card? A lot of homes will have no analog phone terminals at all, unless you call a cell phone analog.

AOL? Nope. Did spend six months on Delphi sometime around '87. Craigslists? If I ever had got a user name, I've never used it. Etc.

The big boys are trying to ransom every seat at the table. Their greed is going to kill them.

Re:This is the future. (1)

mibus (26291) | more than 4 years ago | (#32796082)

Do you really expect people to pay $830 for a 24 station analog card along with the computer and other crap they'll need to run Asterisk?

Do you really expect the future of telephony ends with PSTN?

Asterisk quite happily talks to my home phone handset (which talks DECT on one side and SIP on the other) and my VoIP provider that I already had. I'm running it in the ample spare capacity on my Atom-based home server that I already had (which is my router, MythTV backend, web server, database server, NAS, ...).

I paid nothing to run Asterisk, and it's not a stretch to imagine home phones in a few years having enough compute capacity to run a two-channel Asterisk install without any drama.

Re:This is the future. (1)

selven (1556643) | more than 4 years ago | (#32784336)

Nah, they get it. They also get that decentralization does not serve them. In order to gain power, you need to have a center so you can position yourself as the center (see the caveman days: society was very decentralized, and there was very little social inequality, once we got cities we started to get kings). The phone companies like power, so, much like the RIAA, they want to keep the old ways of doing things going for as long as possible.

Cities, yes, like Rome (1)

reiisi (1211052) | more than 4 years ago | (#32794720)

I'd rather the phone companies came to their senses before Rome burns again.

Re:This is the future. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32784642)

The house phone will become a server, it will run asterisk, and it will host the family/indvidual website and bulletin board.

er... How is this really any different from webspace provided by the household's ISP? I guess what I mean is the infrastructure/protocol is already there, and without the need of local server. So I guess I'm asking why are you reinventing the wheel on a Phone Company system?

(Disclaimer: my basic service account does comes with all this at the moment. Perhaps that's unusual?
http://www.shaw.ca/en-ca/ProductsServices/Internet/No-Cost+Extras/webspace.htm [www.shaw.ca] )

unusual? (1)

reiisi (1211052) | more than 4 years ago | (#32794708)

Oh, yeah, it looks, well, not too bad.

Can you write/install your own CGIs or webapps?

Do you have static IP?

How about your DNS resolvers? Does your ISP charge you extra for resolving a domain name to your IP? Is the charge reasonable for an individual who isn't making money on it?

lucybecker (-1, Offtopic)

lucybecker (1847624) | more than 4 years ago | (#32783220)

when I first heard about this I was worried it would be like an insecure version of freenet, with content being hosted in a constant cache/request loop between users http://www.aaamiracle.ca/ [aaamiracle.ca]

Re:lucybecker (1)

lightversusdark (922292) | more than 4 years ago | (#32783430)

WTF?

Re:lucybecker (2, Informative)

selven (1556643) | more than 4 years ago | (#32784350)

It's a spammer running a script. The sentence in the comment has been posted already in the discussion, and it just reposted it to look more like a legitimate comment, to encourage people to click the link.

Cool! They're friends with one of my ancestors! (1)

pecosdave (536896) | more than 4 years ago | (#32783424)

Bottom row middle - my great, great, great, great grandfather or uncle or something. I've been told there's a family tree in New Mexico or something that shows we're direct descendants of him. The feds lost track of the family, according to the Wikipedia article he didn't have any sons that survived so I'm guessing I'm not a direct descendant since the last name is in tact - or he had a son post office/feds keeping track. Unless there was some cousin marrying or something.

Re:Cool! They're friends with one of my ancestors! (1)

pecosdave (536896) | more than 4 years ago | (#32783432)

Wow, never mind, the older history article I read on him must have been wrong.

Social networking for nerds, but nobody else (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32783968)

I appreciate and understand the efforts of the Diaspora team, but this project is destined to go nowhere. Facebook users don't care about open source or decentralized servers -- they care about interacting with their friends and making connections. A bunch of smelly nerds using some geeky social networking app isn't exactly going to draw in the crowds. Even with Facebook's privacy issues, nobody's going to switch to Diaspora, and even if a few thousand do, what about the few hundred million others? I guarantee that five years from now, we won't be talking about all the users on Diaspora, since there won't be any. Even if Facebook fades away, everyone will have migrated to something a little less... nerdy.

It Won't Work... (2, Insightful)

greenlead (841089) | more than 4 years ago | (#32784578)

... because it will never reach the critical mass necessary to unseat Facebook.

This will never catch on unless there are sites similar to Facebook (hubs) where less-knowledgeable users can sign up. The Facebook population (in my circle, at least) is getting older and many of them tend to learn as little as possible. Advising them to set up a personal web site -- or worse, a server -- especially with security concerns considered, would be a very bad idea.

A better idea would be standardization of social networking protocols, similar to email. This standardization, where users of any social networking service can interact with users on other services, though perhaps with a different user interface, is the answer to solving this problem, rather than a particular software package.

The real promise of Diaspora... (1)

IGnatius T Foobar (4328) | more than 4 years ago | (#32792748)

The real promise of Diaspora is not Diaspora itself, but the standards and protocols that it could potentially spawn. Think about it: if this thing takes off, plenty of people will install Diaspora servers, but plenty more will also begin joining the Diaspora cloud by building the protocols into existing content management (Wordpress, Slash, etc.) and groupware (Citadel, Kolab, etc.) systems. It could potentially become as huge and decentralized as UseNet, except hopefully with better spam controls.
Check for New Comments
Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>