Crazy idea #1 :
Since Signal clients and servers are open source, how about we fork the server to make a federated chat network that uses the signal protocol ?
I'm still new to federated architectures, and I only loosely read the Signal spec, so I don't know if this is even possible.
Feel free to explain how this is not possible, or what you think the main obstacles would be.
If you know of any similar projects, I'm obviously interested.
To sum up all your answers : there are already great federated chat protocols, so let's not make yet another one and spread the users even more. I see two areas of improvement :
1. It would be awesome if we had a consensus over federation protocols to bring more interoperability
2. It should be easier for avergage non-tech-savy users to run their own servers, eg on a RasPi or an old laptop.
Which leads to...
Crazy idea #2 : (by crazy, I mean that I am not actually likely to start such a project on my own)
It should come with packages so that getting your instances up and running is as easy as `apt install [...]` ang going through easy and intuitive configuration wizards with detailed steps for DNS registration, port fwd et al.
@pcouy maybe on kubernetes with helm chart to ease deployment.
But... Why using Signal which is made to process phone items like contacts, and not simply use rocket chat, or Element which is already built for this? We already install it for clients...
@pcouy I don't mean to not use Signal. What I say is that, for your idea, Element or RocketChat are already making the job.
@metal3d Signal is good, and has the advantage that a good part of my contacts already use it.
But I would love to see my contacts make the switch to self hosted federated platforms.
If we want them to make the switch, while avoiding centralization on a few public servers, we better have some really easy way for them to set up their own instances. Something like a tool that pre-configures everything on a RPi image such that it runs completely headless from first boot
@pcouy Yunohost seems to be working well for many users (https://yunohost.org/). It's based on Debian and has a lot of software packaged.
You can also try FreedomBox (https://www.freedombox.org/) which is a Debian project. They even have dedicated hardware (https://www.freedombox.org/buy/). The biggest problem with it is the lack of Nextcloud. However it already has a lot of features : https://wiki.debian.org/FreedomBox/Features
I had a similar thought. My setup is cobbled together from the work of HomelabOs which is an ansible/docker deployment on a Linux server. I have several Fediverse Docker apps running through this method and you can even route it through a Wireguard based bastion on a cheap Digital Ocean droplet if you wanted to self host it. Vivumlab is a fork from HomelabOs and they will have Mastodon and Hubzilla. Pixelfed and Peertube I have working but are not novice friendly.
Yunohost is a headless debian server distro that makes it easy for non technical people to install it on old hardware, raspberry pi or VPS. It automatically configures an xmpp server, and email server. The best part is, it's a platform that allows one click installs of nextcloud, mastodon etc from a simple web panel. It's amazing! Read about it here: https://yunohost.org/#/
@pcouy I was thinking about that! Its a good idea. Maybe while we're at it make it so you dont sign up with a phone number
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