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Showing posts from December, 2018

The Fallacy of distributed = good

I have recently been looking for an alternative social media platform and started using Diaspora* via the pod. Not unlike the cryptocurrency community, the proponents of the various platforms in the Fediverse seem to rather uncritically advocate the distributed nature of these platforms as an inherently positive property in particular when it comes to privacy and data protection. I tend to agree with Yuval Harari who argues in  "Sapiens"    that empires or scaled, centralized forms of organization are one of Homo Sapiens' significant cultural accomplishments. A majority of humans through history have lived as part of some sort of empire. Empires can provide prosperity and ensure lasting peace and stability - like the Pax Romana or in my generation, the Pax Americana. We often have a love/hate relationship with empires - even many protesters who are busy burning American flags during the day, secretly hope that their children some day will get into Har

Google+ Migration - Part VIII: Export to Diaspora*

<- Part VII: Conversion & Staging The last stage of the process is to finally export the converted posts to Diaspora* the chosen target system. As we want these post to appear slowly and close to their original post date anniversary, this process is going to be drawn out over at least one year. While we could do this by hand, it should ideally be done by some automated process. For this to work, we need some kind of server-type machine that is up and running and connected to the Internet frequently enough during a whole year. The resource requirements are quite small, except for storing the staged data which for some users could easily be in multiple gigabytes, mostly depending on the number posts with images. Today it is quite easy to get small & cheap virtual server instances from any cloud provider, for example the micro sized compute engine instances on Google Cloud should be part of the free tier even. I also still have a few of the small, low power Rasbper

Google+ Migration - Part VII: Conversion & Staging

<- Part VI: Location, Location, Location  Part VIII: Export to Diaspora* -> We are now ready to put all the pieces together for exporting to Diaspora*, the new target platform. If we had some sort of " Minitrue " permissions to rewrite history on the target system, the imported posts could appear to always have been there since their original G+ posting date. However since we have only have regular user permissions, the only choice is to post them as new posts at some future point in time. The most straightforward way to upload the archive would be to re-post in chronological order as quickly as possible without causing overload. If the new account is not only used for archive purposes, we may want to maximize the relevance of the archive posts in the new stream. In this case, a better way would be to post each archive post on the anniversary of its original post-date, creating some sort of "this day in history" series. This would require that the