Victus Spiritus

home where Local Apps Compete on Value not Network Lock In

04 Feb 2011

I woke up this morning to catch a fresh off the virtual presses post by Marshall Kirkpatrick's virtual capacities (ReadWriteWeb) on a bold new app architecture. 

Here's how The Locker Project will work. Users will be able to download the data capture and storage code and run it on their own server, or sign up for hosted service - like and

Jeremie Miller, who crafted XMPP which powers most instant messaging apps, has founded the Locker Project. is the corporate backing providing resources to the open source effort. 

The open source effort is in it's alpha stages so it's likely a little too green to bet your company on. Nonetheless, I have confidence an app architecture and network model will take shape and gain momentum much like the one described by and the Locker Project. CouchDB and Couchone have a similar relationship but focus on distributed apps and data access without a uniform routing layer.

How Locker Projects Communicate

The magic of bringing together isolated islands of personal content is, an implementation of an open source p2p layer that enables network edges to act like servers. I mentioned the routing power of Kademlia and Telehash a couple of days back while describing p2pmsg, a notional message layer built on the network. 

One concern I have is that if is the primary hub for negotiating connections between Lockers, what happens when it goes down? I imagine it's much like domain name servers going offline, other Kademlia routers pick up the slack but this step isn't automated. I'll do a little follow up research this morning and find out if and how this distributed network design protects against the failure of the routing layer.