In the aftermath of the #futurespotters workshop in Bucharest this weekend,@TCT,@Bezdomny, @Noemi and myself have started looking into different free software options for uploading various documentation materials from two very intensive days (see original invitation here).
So far we’ve been using a mix of google drive, youtube, vimeo, flickr and hackpads. Not only is this very messy, it’s also not aligned with the values of free software advocates in our community, which include the founders. We have known for some time now that we need safe ways to store, access, edit and share documentation from community events. After CCC last year some of us started exploring candidate stacks in the Community Crypto group. What has been missing is sysadmin support to reliably set up, maintain and manage our tools.
The shared mission? Help members of this community and others to liberate ourselves by replacing the proprietary tools we use with free software alternatives and finding ways to drive support to the free software community as a natural part of our work with clients, other partners etc.
Starting with setting up an alternative to google drive for secure storage of files and collaborative editing of documents.
Exploring our option - Centralised vs. Distributed
Centralised is more versatile because having a single point of contact allows people to do things like collaborate on shared files. Think of it as renting space in one computer managed by either a person or organisation. The options we are exploring are: Owncloud and Rollapp.
Distributed is more collaborative and resilient because your files are broken up into smaller chunks, encrypted and spread throughout a network of thousands of computers with spare storage space. Think of it like renting a little space on people’s hard drives. The options we are exploring are: Tahoe-Lafs, MaidSafe (not released yet), Symform and BitTorrent Sync…
With BitTorrent Sync we can set things up so that everyone who is signed up on edgeryders (and signed in) we can set up a secure network so that only people in the community are accessing our files. And maybe even offer secure file hosting for community members concerned about their privacy and risk of loosing ones materials should any of the proprietary services we all use go down.
What do you think, any other options we should check out?
We’ll ensure that any software we decide to use is free and we will audit it. So now’s your chance to propose something you are interested in but unsure about.