Aether - A decentralized reddit alternative

Continuing the discussion from The chaos at reddit:

This project seems to be a hopeful alternative to reddit:

According to their site:

Aether is a free app that you use to read, write in, and create community moderated, distributed, and anonymous forums, an “anonymous reddit without servers.” — The Verge

The only problem is that because of the reddit chaos, the bootstrap node(s) are overloaded. Normally with a decentralized network like torrent, maidsafe, etc. the more users that connect the faster it should go; so this leads me to believe that Aether is not well designed for scale-ability. Aether’s been up for a long time and still no boards to show for it. Anyone else want to give it a try?


anyone connected here? Left it set to defaults and it wont bootstrap me. Anyone I can bootstrap off of want to shoot me a pm?

After giving Aether a bunch of nodes to connect to, I finally got one that worked. It seems to me that Aether is very slow in terms of update speed and probably unreliable… After leaving Aether up for almost a whole day, I am only connected to 1 node (with 34 boards, 54 threads). It seems that Aether is not doing any form of NAT hole punching and so is limited in the number of nodes that people can connect to, because for a node to actually be connectable, a person must have taken the time to port forward their router and/or open their firewall.

Aether does not send messages for delivery to a single target, instead it sees to that the message will be delivered to all computers within Aether. Naturally, everything is public. Aether is a massive auditorium, not a private message delivery service.

It also seems to me that Aether’s protocol is slapdash at best. Their idea is similar to using the bitcoin blockchain as a form of communication (without the blockchain part). Every node will receive messages while online, so this means that data will accumulate very quickly. Imagine if you tried to download every subreddit, every post, and every comment on reddit… this would be the size of the amount of data you would need to store on your computer, and even worse, transmit! Imagine having a slow connection. Like bitcoin, this design is just not scale-able.

Maybe we should let the developer of Aether know about Maidsafe, it would probably help him along if he could just use the Maidsafe routing/messaging libraries.