I want to own the database that my apps use, Grant Orndorff, May 2020

I have almost no control over the data that apps store for me. I’m talking about the data that apps explicitly advertise themselves for: like the workout data I record in a fitness app, or the todo items I put in a todo app, or the tweets I put on twitter.

The only way I can access this data is via the specific app that stores it, and I can only do things that the product designers had the forethought to include. Generally speaking, I can’t do anything with my data that the app doesn’t explicitly allow, and apps usually don’t expicitly allow much.

Why don’t apps allow much? Because every feature requires a developer to implement it, and developer time is limited and expensive. Implementing some random visualization that I want just isn’t economical if only I (or some small number of people) want it.


Where Solid falls short is its lack of pragmatism. Its technology is too different from what developers already know, and so will have a problem in gaining developer adoption, which is a prerequisite for gaining traction among anyone else. The fact that developers need to “get familiar with Linked Data vocabularies” before they can even create an app means that Solid is too expensive to adopt for 99% of profit-driven apps. Why learn a new method of storing data, when you already know how to use postgres?

So while I am in alignment with the goals and intent of the Solid project, I personally think we need a solution that “just works” for all the developers and companies out there who don’t have time to learn a whole new technology.

On Urbit:

I think Urbit tries to address this problem too, but I’m not too familiar with the project. From what I can tell though, they seem to want to reinvent every single wheel they come across as they approach the problem. In other words, if Solid doesn’t seem quite pragmatic enough, Urbit doesn’t seem to even want to be pragmatic.

Lots of good stuff here, and obviously we agree with most of it. Even suggests ways of payment, which is what we’ve been thinking about (helping developers get paid for their apps, even / especially open source apps, and revenue share from user data payments as one of the ways to get paid).

Thanks @boris

@TrailHub1 is a Web Native technology that aims to make Players be their own Hubs. tweet It creates and intellectually manageable tinkerable, interoperable capability overlay that can bridge between systems sane or insane. Like SoLiD and IPFS, TrailHub is built around a Universal Graph Model, we call MindGraph, which is unlike SoLiD is simple, intellectually (self)manageable, bootstrap-able, and self-hosting. TrailHub, in the first instance is being built on top of IPFS, but, designed to make the hosting ecosystems exchangable.
Of all the systems I ever seen Urbit is the clearest and the closest to the shared, or rather independently re-discovered, ideal. It is levaraging best of breed Web Native, off line first technologies but can accommodate all the other pop(culture)ular insane frameworks based on half baked ideas and layers of leaky abstractions.

Clearly the idea of self-sovereign digital life is an idea whose time has arrived.
Like Calculus in the time of Newton and Leibnitz.
The Digital Monads (Digital Soul) the strange attractor here.
When it is combined with TrailHub it provides a way to make it accessible from the current Web ecosystem. Thanks for the great find.
Again where you lead I follow. Or more likely, since real, thus reasonable problems seem to define their own solution, it is to be expected that if you start with the same set of core values you will find the ways to meet the same need.


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