Haha, I named the title last, but it makes sense, with where I went with this. This was originally supposed to be: “how I’d set up a public jabber service”. But after this exercise it should make a lot of sense.
Jabber is in the running for “most astonishing, yet not sexy” technology. Recently I’ve been researching so many ways to communicate with other folks, from “version controlled forums designed to last forever” to identity-based cryptonode point as part of mesh net", and yet I keep returning to XMPP/jabber as the best in class for what I expect most folks want in their communication tool.
So I’m going to use this topic to start dropping thoughts about the model of comms, and actively comparing it against other technologies.
Here are some presumptions that I want to set up front, but also to discuss:
- XMPP is the thing, but I call it “jabber” the same reason I say “email”, “newsgroup”, or “tv”, yet never mention TCP/IP or IMAP and SMTP in polite company; it’s a useful shorthand for a bunch of stuff that ought to and can work as a simple metaphor. Someone should have xerox’d Cisco considering the name of an XMPP product of theirs, though considering their company’s name is shared with the name of the city that no one likes or uses, they likely don’t need a bandaid in this particular situation.
- The use case I keep in mind presumes a “normal” use of servers and DNS; meaning no Tor or OpenNIC or dark net stuff. Not because that isn’t cool, it’s just that until it is presented in a cookiecutter package we must presume it’s too difficult for the average person to participate.
- OMEMO is a great tool, and we should train folks on how to use it; we should endeavor to build chat networks that presume they won’t and protect them anyway.
Feel free to mention services to compare it to. I plan on the following initial list:
- Email and mailing lists
- text BBS
- fossil forums
- Group blog
Let me know what I’m missing. I’ll chip away at this a bit at a time, and we’ll break out as needed.