Then I literally trip over on specific page of Free Code Camp...
In one simple signup, I've gone from, "Help me Obi Wan, you're my only hope," to Skywalker first sitting at Yoda's feet. I plan to Jedi the fuck out of this. Hmm, past record? Lets see. Here is that structured learning that I crave, because I _NEED_ to build an app. A decentralised, NAT hole punching, peer-to-peer app that makes client-server models obsolete. One that uses open standards and publishes an open standard for its operation, so that others might build the specific app for your need, while I build the specific app for my need and they both work with each other, at least as much as for the common features. Client-server models control us, make us "tribal", peer-to-peer frees us to be the centers of our own, partially overlapping, private social networks.
So why is this such a big deal for me? ODD? No! The fact that, between Elon and Mark, our very dreams are being owned by corporations. Our culture is being locked up by Disney, Netflix, Amazon and many others. The only thing that makes this possible is a perversion of the Internet - the client-server model. The billionaires own the big, popular servers, and we give them our reactions for free, we let them manipulate us for free, we are becoming subserviant to them - "Elon, with Tesla and SpaceX will save the world!" shout the enthralled fanbois (and girls, too.) I want an app where I connect to my friends, family and associates, securely, easily and without making rich cunts richer off the back of my data and reactions.
"Join Mastodon," you say. I did. Earlier this year, because a friend had moved there (aus.social), It's still not a user-centred platform. Then Mark the IP Thief announced Threads, a "firewalled" Mastodon instance that still sucks from the Fediverse, but doesn't give back to the Fediverse. Mark the IP Thief is hovering up all the ActivityPub data he can get his hands on. I left Facebook last year, at great social cost, because I had been 12 years a slave to that man's empire. He's Darth Vader with a likeable grin. Aus.Social were looking into blocking outgoing stuff to Threads, but that couldn't be verified as working. I'm also pretty sure that if anybody I'm friends with on another instance that doesn't block outgoings to Threads favourites my post, that gets forwarded on to Mark and to that Bluesky guy and other fediverse billionaires. The problem with Masto is the client-server model. It is server-centric and the billionaires will either own or crush it in the next 10 years. That simple. No need to even worry about the lack of encryption, the big greedy effers are already hoovering the internet for our data and reactions already. Encryption is the least of our worries, unless...
Yeah, this is a bit ranty, sorry, not sorry.
In my last post, I wrote of an app called RetroShare. RetroShare is like AOL without the SQUEEEE-WAH-GA-DING-GA-DANG-GA-DONG of dialup. You can chat one-on-one, in groups, you can buy and sell, share files like photos of your hols, dick pics, it's well, AOL 30 years on.
I've written of Nightweb, a similar app that was too complex to help friends install and use, because they couldn't understand the "run the app, click the button, use your browser" model. So I don't know if that punches holes quite as well. Besides, it's unmaintained and I2P is being overtaken by the tech at the heart of Interplanetary File System, or IPFS, and that tech is libP2P - a dev-ops standards compliant code library that manages Distributed Hash Table (DHT), peer-to-peer, person-to-person chat and sharing within application software. It's not an app, it's one of several tools needed for creating an app, it's the transport mechanism.
Then, yesterday, I discovered a thing called gun.db, another tool, a database tool. Apps have frontends (your screen) and backends (the transports, database and, currently at least, the server components) and I have just found 2 tools that are easy(ish) to understand that eliminate the serverside backend and relocate it on the peer. gun.db is a distributed database, not held on any server, other than the one in your app that talks to the transports - in our case, the hash table. If your database in your app sees my app has the same database, they mutally update - our posts get shared. The app I envisage is possible - that is the basis of a modern social timeline app. My dream is possible. I knew it was, but now I might be able to prove it is.
So, starting tonight, I'm going back to (online) school. To learn and accredit the tools I need to build this app. Because, despite being a shithole of capitalistic, right-wing billionaires, the USA has some pretty cool social programmes, too, and Free Code Camp is one of them. Use it while it's still there! All of you!