[p2p-hackers] ease of use in a decentralized communication system

Wes Felter wesley at felter.org
Fri Jun 23 21:00:04 UTC 2006


K.S.Sreeram wrote:
> Hi All
> 
> As I had mentioned in my earlier post, I'm working on a decentralized
> communication system, where every user is identified by his RSA key. A
> DHT is used to map the user's public key to his network location (ip
> address). A user's contact list basically is just a list of public keys.
> 
[snip]
> 
> One of the biggest stumbling blocks that will hinder mass adoption of
> this product is the fact that users need to manually exchange their
> public keys (e.g thru email), before they can communicate with each other.

The last time I tried Groove (back in the 1.0 days), it did initial 
introductions via email and it seemed fine to me. Maybe it's helpful 
here to distinguish initial introduction and transitive introductions: 
only one email message should be required to bring a new user into the 
network; after that users can introduce each other over the P2P network 
itself.

Directories (e.g. key servers) have obvious privacy problems; I prefer 
the object-capability style where it is impossible to know that a user 
exists unless you have been specifically introduced. (Of course in any 
social network you will have the Marc Canters who want to crawl the 
whole thing, but oh well.)

Wes Felter - wesley at felter.org




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