p2p email: Virtual Email Institutions for Thunderbird

Kent James kent at caspia.com
Mon Aug 4 19:51:03 UTC 2014


Hi Randolph,

I believe there are many pieces of your proposal that echo themes I've 
been promoting [ (1), (2), and (3)], but I have a few questions and 
comments.

1) I'm confused as to whether Goldbug is a chat protocol or an email 
protocol, or both. Could you discuss that? Are you proposing this as 
chat or email type?

2) Overall Thunderbird strategy issues are currently developed, if at 
all, only through a very time consuming effort of consensus building. We 
are currently 95% certain that we will be having a Thunderbird summit in 
Toronto in October. It would be great if you could consider presenting 
your ideas there to build the consensus. See 
https://wiki.mozilla.org/Thunderbird:Summit_2014

3) As I understand it, there are many ongoing projects claiming to be 
the post-Snowden messaging standard (see 
https://github.com/OpenTechFund/secure-email) . I think that we really 
need a big picture overview of what is going on, so that can put Goldbug 
in context. Assuming that some of the resource generation concepts that 
we have been discussing materialize, then the decision for the 
Thunderbird team to back a particular approach will be a very critical 
decision that we will need to consider carefully. You are always welcome 
of course to provide an addon for a particular approach, but as the only 
person who has really done that (ExQuilla for EWS) I can tell you it is 
an enormous amount of work.

4) If Thunderbird is to stand for anything, it should stand for 
"actively promoting open internet standards in messaging, calendaring, 
and contacts" (2). I should probably add to that "standards-based, 
vendor neutral" as well. To what extent is Goldbug standards-based, and 
vendor neutral?

:rkent

NOTES

(1) Your "From the operational view Mozilla could set up one or two 
servers running this kernel", see my "Use of Income from Donations ... 
5. Support for ongoing expenses of possible server-based innovations" 
from the now obsolete https://wiki.mozilla.org/Donations_Proposal

(2) Concerning your "(C) WHY - Strategy Information ... " - you need to 
see the summary proposal 
"http://mesquilla.com/2014/07/31/thunderbirds-future-the-tldr-version/" 
In particular, the next step after we resolve the current issue of a 
potential Toronto summit is going to be to deal with some of the 
governance issues, which I think will support your "T-Bird is not 
company, T-Bird is community. Let' s bring T-Bird into the hand of the 
community ..."  So there is motion in the directions that you state.

(3) There are large technical challenges within current Thunderbird to 
add new account types such as you are suggesting. But see my 
http://mesquilla.com/2010/12/27/new-account-types-in-javascript-for-thunderbird-part-1/ 
for approaches. While that is quite old in some ways, the Skinkglue 
approach is actually still maintained by me, though primarily as as C++ 
superclass rather than a javascript superclass. See
https://bitbucket.org/rkentjames/skinkglue





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