The Evolution of Online Carrier Pigeons — Breaking Down Messaging in Web3by@anormaljourney
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The Evolution of Online Carrier Pigeons — Breaking Down Messaging in Web3

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Web3 Messaging is the new, and better, armored, online carrier pigeon. Currently, each pigeon represents a different messaging service and can deliver messages in their own language — think Instagram, Whatsapp, etc. With Web3 pigeons, the entire fleet works together to deliver the message. This bypasses spam, reduces the likelihood of any scamming, and generally improves privacy and privacy by magnitudes.

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The way we communicate is about to change — forever.

Web3 is making waves as the brand new technological paradigm to change the internet as we know it. If you don’t know what web3 is — in short, it’s the same as web2, only it uses new technology to cut out the influence of a service provider.

In other words, it’s purely the user, and the service, with no one intercepting the two. Speaking of interception, did you know that hackers can compromise your Whatsapp account based off of a simple phone call? Spam, scams, and everything in between plagues most of the messaging apps we use today.

Coupling this with a platform’s ability to collect data on their users — with or without their consent in some cases, presents a violation that should not exist in any service. Keep in mind these messaging apps not only are just used for leisure, but for business and confidential matters as well.

What if we could eliminate those problems — guarantee privacy, anonymity when needed, and have strict, defined rules for who exactly can contact us, in what context, and to identify bad actors swiftly?

Enter, Web3 Messaging — the new, and better, armored, online carrier pigeon.

Old vs New — How the hell is it different?

https://pixabay.com/photos/dove-carrier-pigeon-purple-bird-939973/

https://pixabay.com/photos/dove-carrier-pigeon-purple-bird-939973/

Imagine you had a fleet of carrier pigeons. Each pigeon here represents a different messaging service and can deliver messages in their own separate language — think Instagram, Whatsapp, etc. On top of that, before the pigeon can deliver the message, they have to stop at a checkpoint to verify the message before it is sent.

War Pigeons used in WW2. https://warfarehistorynetwork.com/article/warfares-unsung-pigeon/

War Pigeons used in WW2. https://warfarehistorynetwork.com/article/warfares-unsung-pigeon/

When each of these pigeons gets compromised in some way, such as a sickness (a hack or exploit) — the entire service goes down, or the majority of users are affected.

Sometimes, the pigeon dies completely, and no one is able to send messages using that particular messenger anymore.

This is currently how Web2 services work as a whole. If the central server goes down, or is compromised, then the entire service is rendered unavailable to its users.

With Web3, it mitigates most of these problems. Web3 pigeons aren’t reliant on just themselves, rather the entire fleet works together to deliver the message. If one pigeon dies, the other one picks up the pace and gets it delivered.

Each Web3 message is uber secure and impenetrable. No one except for the specified receiver(s) and the sender knows what’s in the message. These pigeons are smart, too — they know exactly who to deliver it to, and know exactly who to avoid.

Web3 is distributed, meaning a singular node or server going down will not affect a messaging service. The lack of a service provider also guarantees privacy, as only the explicitly defined users can send or receive messages. This bypasses spam, reduces the likelihood of any scamming, and generally improves the user’s experience and privacy by magnitudes.

Technical Hurdles with Web3 Messaging

As with any new tech, there are some current challenges

The primary hurdle right now is handling user identity and accounts.

While most web3 messaging services do a good job handling this by allowing any Web3 identity to be used with their service, there are two foundational problems:

  1. Generating the web3 identity in the first place is typically not user friendly.

  2. Keeping your web3 identity safe is not universal for mainstream users, and also lacks UX/UI.

This is mostly due to the fact that while you’re in control of your data, it means you also have more responsibility over your identity. Your accounts cannot just be recovered easily via email — each is a cryptographic key that, once lost, is lost forever.

Overtime, these challenges will be solved. In fact, I’m already planning some ways to engineer web3 account recovery solutions, so stay tuned!

What’s out there?

So, is anyone doing this right now? The answer is: yes! Here are my top picks (the last one might be slightly biased >:D):

  • Relay.cc — send and receive messages using the XMTP protocol, a second-layer protocol built on Ethereum using your Web3 identity.
  • Mailchain — A universal, Web3 Inbox. Email on Web3.
  • Dialect — built on Solana, as web3 messaging and notification platform.
  • Uke (my own upcoming project) — I’m actually working on my own messaging protocol using Substrate and Polkadot tech. Think Discord — but with web3’s security. Overtime, I’ll probably be posting about it and its progress. It has messaging, identity, spam filtering, and more.

Conclusion

https://slate.com/culture/2012/10/julius-neubronner-and-the-amazing-world-of-pigeon-photography.html

https://slate.com/culture/2012/10/julius-neubronner-and-the-amazing-world-of-pigeon-photography.html

The future of the internet is upon us. A new age, where people can be more in control of what they contribute to the World Wide Web. It’s important to realize that we are still in the beginning stages of this new paradigm. Seemingly simple applications, such as messaging, still aren’t fleshed out.

Web3 represents a more secure, faster, private, and robust version of the internet. Your data belongs to you — in theory, you should be in full control.

This is the time to build, so let’s have fun doing it!

pce out!

Also published here.

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