Ask HN: How might HN build a social network together?

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  • ipfs

    Peer-to-peer hypermedia protocol


    That being said, I don't think it's impossible but it's almost going to be a "worst is better" solution and one that at least has some traction now, like Mastodon [2] or Scuttlebutt [3] (I'm on Mastodon but haven't used Scuttlebutt). Maybe IPFS thrown in there somewhere [4]? There might even be a way to bootstrap a social web through some web3 solution, though that's pretty speculative at this point (or maybe overlaps with IPFS?).

    All of the FOSS/libre alternatives have major problems, not the least of which is that they're not tested at scale, have growing pains or just don't have the critical mass that any of the other platforms do (though maybe Mastodon is getting more popular?).

    I go where the people are. The major feature, in my opinion, is Metcalfe's law. Any other feature might be necessary for long term survival but for to even get started, the value added from Metcalfe's law dwarfs any new feature that people might think up. I'm willing to put up with some pain for a libre/free/FOSS solution but even then, it needs to be decentralized in some way or else we're most likely to be doomed by a repeat of something like Reddit open sourcing their stack, it being a mess and them just close sourcing it again, without any major benefit to the public or users.

    Put it this way: Why is some idea going to work when so many other people have tried and failed? This is not a rhetorical question. There's bound to be a social network that takes over FB/TWitter/Whatever. What are the conditions for this new social network to take over? A new breed of users? Cheaper compute? Web3 adoption? Cheaper storage leading to easier data distribution? Continually cheaper communication costs?

    Sometimes it's good to throw stuff at the wall and see what sticks, that's certainly how a lot of startups succeed, but that's not something I'm going to invest a lot of emotional energy into.






  • Movim

    Movim - Decentralized social platform

    For social networking atop XMPP, see

    Combined with the in-development ActivityPub gateway from Libervia, interop with Mastodon, Pleroma and others becomes possible too. The decentralized social web space is quite active at the moment.

  • Appwrite

    Appwrite - The Open Source Firebase alternative introduces iOS support . Appwrite is an open source backend server that helps you build native iOS applications much faster with realtime APIs for authentication, databases, files storage, cloud functions and much more!


    A simple stateless privacy-protecting URL redirecting service for Matrix

    In case folks are curious: A stable release of Bluesky/ATProto's reference server, client, and dev tooling should land early next year. There's an active matrix channel if you want to follow closely at

  • diaspora*

    A privacy-aware, distributed, open source social network.

    diaspora* is still a thing, and what you describe looks like its concept of "aspect", which was developed before google+ " circles". It is AGPL, you're welcome to contribute or fork it.

  • Elgg

    A social networking engine in PHP/MySQL

  • spreed

    🗨️ Nextcloud Talk – chat, video & audio calls for Nextcloud

  • ITCB-master

    One Repo to Find Them, and In the Darkness, Bind Them

    Thanks. I’ve considered doing stuff like Vimeo/YouTube stuff, and may do so, but it’s a lot of work. I’ve had a full dance card, the last couple of years, and that has even affected my text postings (which is why I came up with my “Shorties”[0] series).

    I enjoy writing, but don’t enjoy video production as much (but I haven’t really done enough to say that, definitively).

    When I give talks and classes, I spend a lot of time, preparing. I spent close to a month, preparing this 90-minute Bluetooth class[1].

    I have just been a bit strapped for time, lately.



  • InfluxDB

    Access the most powerful time series database as a service. Ingest, store, & analyze all types of time series data in a fully-managed, purpose-built database. Keep data forever with low-cost storage and superior data compression.

  • Coze

    Coze is a cryptographic JSON messaging specification designed for human readability.

    How to fix censorship on social media?

    Empower everyone with their own cryptographic keys.

    This requires easier to use cryptographic tools so developers can write clients for users. I'm working on a tool that makes using cryptography easier:

NOTE: The number of mentions on this list indicates mentions on common posts plus user suggested alternatives. Hence, a higher number means a more popular project.

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