Despite a social-connected platform, the internet has inherited from its initial scheme which is, in one way or another, tied to some servers. It is usually referred to as a client-server model.
If you want to use popular platforms – be it Google, Facebook, iTunes or whatsoever, as a “client” more often than not, you would be required to signup for an account, they have everything you are doing on this platform initiated from that same account. From one point of view, this allows these platforms to “get a better idea” about who you are from the so-called minimum information they are requesting from you.
But we all know it, they collect more about us than what we think they do. A lot of tricks are put in place for that: from cookies tracking your web behavior, to privacy policies that tell you that they are combining everything. Learn about serverless IM system.
The scheme is simple: create an online platform that is so popular and widely used that people won’t even question about the information that is required to be able to join that network.
But, do we all need all those “roommates”?
What I’m calling “roommates” here are the other “unknown” people on the same platform (the room) that we are sharing. Not only are those roommates potential risks (if we don’t manage well our privacy settings, they may be exposed to some so-called private information that we are “publicly” sharing on platforms like Facebook, for example).
If I want to chat with some friends, do I have to be available “online” for all those “roommates”? I don’t know about you, but, personally, I never turn on the chat feature on facebook- reason being is that there are too many people on my friend list who are so eager in having some time-wasting conversation with you on that chat. So what I’m doing is that, if I have to chat with some people, I don’t use facebook chat, but I’d rather go on a different platform (Skype or Google talk). But those later are not “protected” from those stalkers too.
Why should I have to “be exposed”?
So this leaves me wondering: why should I have to “be exposed” to all those friends lists that would know that I’m online, while all I want to do is chat or share files with a specific friend? Why should I use a server-side platform (Skype, Google Talk, Facebook chat) to be able to connect with the friends that I want to talk to? In fact, most of those platforms are set up in such a way that either you are connected, then the “whole world” knows about it, or you say you are offline. But then, genuine people who want to talk to you don’t know if they can disturb you or not.
It leads me to a great comment that Walter Campbell (a reader of this blog) mentioned to us: he suggested a tool called “retroshare” that does what I said earlier. The funny thing is: while I was looking for a serverless IM system, my first approach was to search for a website called retroshare.com (that don’t exist by the way), while it’s just an open source software that everybody can install on their computer and launch so that they have their own private IM solution (and more).
I like the idea of serverless IM system very much: it’s like setting-up a two-way channel between my correspondent and me while being able to do most of the tasks the internet allows me to do: chat, share files, … That’s a brilliant idea IMHO. Would you use such software? Why? Or why not?