[ExI] Facebook is freaking me out

Kat Walsh kat at mindspillage.org
Tue Sep 9 02:24:08 UTC 2008

On Mon, Sep 8, 2008 at 7:28 PM, Emlyn <emlynoregan at gmail.com> wrote:
> I love the "cloud", I've been a fanboi since before it was cool. I've
> always hated running my own servers, and am under no illusions that I
> can run anything in production at anywhere close to the quality of the
> big guys. I must confess though that I find the current state of the
> "cloud" is a bit early railroad for my tastes. Lots of closed
> commercial stuff, not much thought for interoperability, for the
> ability to move data from one server to another. That's been fine
> because the concepts behind a lot of services have still been fuzzy,
> but I think things are bedding down enough that we need to begin to be
> a bit more demanding about these things.
> What really makes me uneasy is the dominance of closed source. So,
> where I can, I'm trying to choose free software based solutions over
> closed commercial stuff. eg: for blogs, I favour Wordpress. One of the
> most important feature sets, to me, are the import/export options,
> combined with the fact that anyone can host it, many do, and I could
> if I absolutely had to (which I really don't want to, but I could, in
> theory).
> I'm sure I was coming to a point, but someone wants me to sign up to
> twitter. Ooh, shiny!

The above paragraphs lead me to suggest http://identi.ca --  a
microblogging service like twitter but based on open source software
(laconica) and meant to be part of a distributed network of such
services. Of course, convincing the rest of your social network to
join you may be more difficult! (A large part of mine is free
software-ish people and still not everyone has jumped over from
Twitter. Damn network effects.)

You may also be interested in http://autonomo.us , a group of people
creating and promoting open network services -- there is a very small
but growing list maintained there of "open web services". (When so
much of what used to be on the desktop is now on the web, are you
using free software that you control if you every site you visit is a
black box?)

(See also -- the Open Software Service Definition:
<http://opendefinition.org/ossd?action=show&redirect=osd> and Identica
FAQ: <http://identi.ca/doc/faq>.)

Hoping I'm not veering too far off-topic,
free software supporter and very very occasional delurker

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