Akasha.world – A Next-Generation Social Media Network


A Next-Generation Social Media Network

Akasha( [aːkaːʃə], आकाश) which means ether or sky in Hindi and Sanskrit is the name for this next generation social-network based on Ethereum and runs on Ethereum Virtual Machine. The project is being built by a solid team lead by Mihai Alisie (co-founder of Ethereum,Bitcoin Magazine creator) and is advised by the co-founder of Ethereum Vitalik Buterin and the creator of InterPlanetary File System (IPFS) Juan Benet. The project was launched around May 3rd, 2016 and is still under development. People can signup for the alpha version of the product.

It uses the crypto-currency called AETH (Akasha ETH).AETH is now a test token on the private chain used for this pre-release. As a test token it does not have any value outside the purpose of testing AKASHA. At this point, you can get AETH tokens by creating an identity on AKASHA.

They are planning a ICO in near future , once they have a stable release of the product.

With current social networks like Facebook, Twitter and others, the biggest problem and challenge is ownership of content and privacy.  Social networks are under continuous surveillance and sometimes identities get stolen or leaked by malicious stake holders. Also, your subjected to censorship and top down information throttling by the platforms. Which had resulted in fake news and freedom of expression problems.  Also, centralized ownership of information makes it easier for various authorities, organizations or hackers to secure backdoor vulnerabilities.

Not only that, social networking users data is continuously curated and used for the benefit of the platform for making huge revenues.

The real cause of the problem is that all the information gets handled, utilized, controlled and monetized by a single entity.

Akasha the social network is trying to fix this problem by using the power of decentralized network platform Ethereum and InterPlanetary File System.

The application has a newsfeed which is curated based on tags which you select.

Not only that, you can follow people and influencers. This feature is similar to Twitter. The friend graph in Akasha might be different than your everyday Facebook friends.

You spend ethereum “gas” to publish posts. And people will be able to get AETH for their content.

The good:

  • Project has established developers and advisors working on it  including founders of Ethereum.
  •  Akasha is an incentivized social network where data and identity is decentralized and where you follow users and have a news feed associated with that content.
  • The project is open sourced. And will definitely prove as a reference point for many other ethereum based dapps to come. 
  • The project is beautifully made with Windows, Linux and Mac applications.
  • The hard work associated with combining Ethereum smart contracts with IPFS and other tools is visible and is great head start.
  • The founders decided to first build a functional product before planning for an ICO. This as per me is a better strategy than various other companies which plan ICO ahead of product development. This gives additional credibility in the vision and direction of the product Akasha.
  • If the project addresses issues, then this Akasha can become a great product for other 3rd party developers to fly at.

The bad:

  • The setup time: Akasha application needs to synchronize the blockchain before starting the application. This can be a long and visibly slow process. This only happens the first time you launch the application. Or if you kill the application.
  • Akasha has similarities with twitter , where you follow users or influencers whom you might not know personally.
  • Its not a web app or website, rather a .exe or .dmg file which needs to be installed. This makes the client heavy weight. The reasons might be because of synchronization effort involved with Ethereum platform. This might need to be addressed both my Akasha and Ethereum team, if a web app solution is possible similar to Steemit.
  • The domain name is little hard to find since it ends with ” .world”.
  • The Mac OS version is slightly less tested than the Linux and Windows versions so it might be more prone to errors than the other releases.
  • Updating versions is tough, since your installing through private downloads. You will manually need to check for new releases and uninstall the old client and install the updated one.
  • The community is still small and the content is still not there to interest people.
  • This is expected from a alpha stage project.There might be bugs associated with your experience.

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