If you’re at all a social network enthusiast, you’re probably interested in – or at least peripherally familiar with – Diaspora, the would-be Facebook killer that’s been the belle of the social networking debutante ball since its Kickstarter account went nuclear.
Last evening, Diaspora’s source code was released to developers (well, everyone, but I for one am a little coding-dumb), and the public at large was finally given a glimpse of the (possible) future of social networking.
For the moment, it looks a hell of a lot like Facebook.
Honestly, that’s not a bad thing. Facebook’s got the right idea, it’s just a little… I wanted to say cumbersome, but that’s totally not the right word. Frantic? Hang on, let me hit up thesaurus.com for a second.
Facebook is congested. And that’s something Diaspora ain’t.
What most are wondering about, though, is Diaspora’s promise of true privacy and control, and whether or not it will ultimately provide a secure alternative to Facebook. Apparently, the Diaspora team haven’t taken their eyes off the prize, and cite the open source release of the project as a necessary step for an intrinsically fair, user-powered, secure product.
“Even the most powerful, granular set of dropdowns and checkboxes will never give people control over where their content is going, let alone give them ownership of their digital self,” says the blog. Truer words perhaps never spoken.
Open-source projects, historically, do only so-so. Just the way of the world. But the Diaspora dudes have a plan for that, as well: Facebook integration on day one. Honestly, that was my biggest worry – that in switching to Diaspora, I’d be leaving my straggler friends behind. Now, it doesn’t matter.
Sold, guys. Sold.
If Diaspora ends up being half as functional as its sexy-as-shit interface looks, we might be seeing the future of social right here.