Did Maidsafe bite off more than they can chew?

First time poster, but I’ve been following Maidsafe for a little while now and trying to understand how it compares with other cryptos. While Bitcoin touts itself as a decentralized virtual currency, Etheruem for decentralized smart contracts, StorJ for decentralized storage and so on, Maidsafe is building a decentralized platform or ‘protocol’. Maidsafe is trying to reshape how data is stored and accessed online; essentially decentralizing the Internet. Is that correct?

Given the broad scope of the project, I would assume that it would require exponentially more work than projects which are limited to a single or a few functions. I read somewhere that the project was begun many years ago and that the testnet is up right now, although it is still in the pre-alpha stage, right? I guess I’m questioning whether the SAFE network will reach a stage where we will see the myriad of applications being proposed right now actually running on it, or whether the project will drag on for a long time, unable to work out a good solution for the current bugs and kinks, and finally put out a lacklustre product.

What are other people’s thoughts on this? I know there are other projects that have similar goals like sidechains, Meganet, Counterparty, Bittorrent (BitTorrent wants to change the way the web is built - The Verge), etc. and the competition will become fiercer as time goes on.

MaidSafe began about a decade ago. From where I stand I see a core development team making progress every week. I see highly skilled developers on the periphery working on projects that will interface with the protocol. I see a community of interested people discussing what a successful SafeNetwork might look like and discussing in detail the societal ramifications. This is big from any perspective.
There are always bugs, hiccups and upgrades that need to be made to code as it is being developed. There is no time line of releases other than soon. There are goals set for each week and reset if necessary. I for one back this because I believe in the vision, that people of the world are only truly free when they are allowed privacy and the ability to trade without restriction. I see this as the beginning of the end of top down economic and social structures. A great equalizer. As for biting off more than one can chew… I will be around as long as the developers are taking bites.


There is a range of viewpoints, from SAFE maximalists, who wish it to be Internet 2.0, to SAFE minimalists who just want to stash their files safely and securely. Most SAFEists are somewhere in between. There’s things that will certainly come (secure storage, incentivised with tokens called Safecoins), things that seem a bit vague, such as unhindered marketplaces, and things that are kind of taken on faith, such as the compute layer. A person’s degree of aversion to uncertainty will determine where he falls on that spectrum.

[EDIT] As for biting off more than they could chew: The core devs only need to focus on the underlying network, and the apps will be taken care of by vastly more people. I feel that GNU/Linux is a reasonable analogy: Linux is just the kernel, and Linus Torvalds and his team work on that, while orders of magnitude more people work on the wider (GNU) ecosystem that also ends up in the “Linux” distros.


No they have not. It’s a 20 course meal meant to be savored not rushed.


Why? They’re just making the bottom layer, the core protocol.

It’s not like they’re gonna be the ones making all the apps on top of it, that do all the extra stuff

That’s like saying http is really hard to build because look at all the big awesome websites and services people have built on top of it.

MaidSafe is just giving people the simple tools to exchange data and communicate without servers. Completely different individuals will make all the crazy extra services and functionalities, from these simple tools.

Also, it’s already basically done. Check out the open source code, download the clients, make a website on the current SAFE network, etc. The only parts left are letting people make their own vaults, and then farming / SafeCoin (Which they are being very careful not to release until it’s very solid, because lots of people have lots of money invested in it, and troubles / price crashes wouldn’t be good)


Sidechains wont even begin to touch on what the entirety of maidsafe offers and would still be blockchain technology

meganet seems to be looking like it is mainly for mobiles i think when i last read, which in the future with the huge exponential growth of mobile phone users across the globe i can see as having potential , but how useful will it be if its limited to mobilephone , storage size is nothing compared to hard drives for bigger machines , battery power, it might only be of use when the phone is being charged since it would be so demanding , and with battery power being one of the slowest advancing techs especially with all the new extra amounts of power each new phone requires is becoming worse and worse for phone battery life

Counterparty is trying to replicate ethereum over the bitcoin blockchain which i find a respectable pursuit , it might be achieved it migh not, but again it’s blckchain tied technology and doesn’t really compare to what maidsafe is trying to achieve

There are many technologies fighting for the same/similar goals and dreams of how technology can be used and created to help benefit the world, eac with their own motives and desires mainly focusing on the creators own version of what needs to be done . But they are for the most part vastly different in the amount they are trying to achieve and how they are trying to achieve it

But this is a fact for pretty much every single things in the modern world , even before the modern world , competition breeds innovation and advancement

You have to understand that the main difference also between all of these projects is that the majority are based off of a blockchain consensus mechanism while maidsafe is not

and ethereum doesn’t even have smart contracts :stuck_out_tongue:

words directly from vitalik many many moons ago

“We exist at a somewhat lower level than the ideas that you are thinking of. I now regret calling the objects in Ethereum “contracts”, as you’re meant to think of them as arbitrary programs and not smart contracts specifically.”


I think it takes a lot of bites to eat an elephant, but MaidSAFE has been chewing for a very long time…

There are some pretty big advantages to designing the entire system rather than piecemeal services duct taped together to accomplish the same task…

Time will tell – They do seem to be getting a lot closer all the time, but it has been quite a few years of ‘close’


Thanks for the replies everyone, you brought up some good points to take into consideration. I first heard of Maidsafe on bitcointalk, and decided to come here to hear from people who have been involved in the project longer. I would guess it must be hard to build a core protocol like the SAFE network if the project is around 10 years old and still being worked on very diligently by the looks of it. The devs do seem to be getting closer everyday, but like another user said, they have been close for a few years. I’m going to try and download the client and join the current SAFE testnet when I get some time to have a better feel of how it works.

By the way, how does the SAFE network handle dynamic content? I read somewhere that everything would be handled on the client side. Can anyone give some examples of how that would work? Thanks

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Dynamic Content comes up every 2-4 weeks, there are proposals to accommodate it by using structured data storage, but that is not the focus right now (which is fine, as key functionality needs to be completed first.



It’s been in the making since 22 Feb 2006 and 10 years later we are closer than ever to the promised delivery. Have some patience, faith and come back in a couple of months/1 year to see where we are :wink:

Welcome! Thanks for posting :smiley:

The SAFE Network is very much alive and kicking. The dev team is programming day and night, their releases (for the pre-alpha) are fairly consistent, the quality is superb, the bugs that do still exist are minor and are known to the devs.

We expect (I hope) to see the next big release (testsafecoin) within 6 weeks, hopefully the full 1.0 release in another 6 weeks after that.

Their motivation is unwaivering, their work ethic is unparalleled, and quite honestly they have the funding to make it happen regardless of a time schedule.

While I agree with everything else you’ve said, I’m not sure we’re at the 6 week mark yet. I’d love to be proved wrong, but I don’t want to get people’s hopes up.


Sorry my fault I wrote it in an unclear way.

I should have said:

So hopefully 12 weeks away until the 1.0 release :slight_smile:

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Hmm, there’s less than 12 weeks till summer, so may I conclude that this 12 week precipitation analysis also indicates another very dry spring?

Whenever the topic of guesstimates comes up, I always like to revisit the legendary predictions topic for gems such as this:

I would be happy with testnet 3 by April 2015!


What will the basic functionality include and how much more needs to be done to reach that point? Is it just vaults and farming and transferring MAID for Safecoin? I saw the website has a roadmap page but it has nothing posted on it.

Undoubtedly true.

However you’re referencing a quote that was made at the end of the development cycle for the C-language version of the network.

I’m sure that post was made (Feb 2015) almost immediately before the switch to the Rust-language.

So yeah, pulling out-of-reference quotes is fun, but the context is always important, the network at that time was nearing testnet quality, and probably would have been released (edit: within a few months) had the switch not been made.


The roadmap should be updated within a week or two, they’ve been working on outlining a new roadmap since their massive progress in the sprints (weeks of intense coding).

The basic functionality of the 1.0 release will allow farming of safecoin, storing public and private files, decentralized apps, and encrypted messaging.

Right now they’re debugging and making stable the current code libraries. After that they’ll be testing client-side vaults, then implement messaging (chats/chatrooms), and finally testsafecoin.

Along the way there’s debugging, refactoring, and bug-hunting.

I’m impressed with the speed of the dev team in the sprints. Meaning that they can get minimal versions of each part working very quickly, it’s just the stability testing that drags it down.

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Funny you should say that because while choosing a quote I noticed - but at first didn’t want to include - this one, which took Rust in consideration but is also going to be wrong only 3 weeks from now:

I’ve made some bad calls too, so it’s not like I got better insight than most, although it has to be said that one of main selling points of switching to Rust was that it was going to make everything faster. Last time someone from MaidSafe commented on this we were told it did.
If that is true then original (C-based) availability estimates were horrendously wrong. If a Rust-based v1.0 will come out this summer, then a C-based version wouldn’t have been ready before 2017 which makes me think what is the basis of the original estimates by the Dev team that were made back in 2013.


Damn the routing library! :rage: :cry:

You’ve brought up an interesting point. Which is if the Rust implementation is supposedly developed faster, how could their predictions of the C-version have possibly met their goal date?

I don’t really have an answer to that, but one of David’s reasonings for switching to Rust, was purely for the size and legibility of the codebase. He wanted as many people as possible to be able to go through it, understand it, and improve it. And in that regard, he has been tremendously successful:


The “predictions thread” recorded expectations in FEB 2015… based on knowledge at the time. Obviously, a lot has changed since then. We can look at the project in terms of milestones for a less fuzzy view.

Major Milestones 2015 to 2016

These are just highlighted milestones that have come to fruition. There are others (vault installation) on the way, but have not come to fruition… yet.

Ultimately, everyone should to determine where the project is… from their own point of view.

I’m happy at this point because my crowd sale investment has quadrupled ($0.02 to $0.08)… meaning the market is “currently” optimistic about project SAFE.