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Current project state

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Hello internet,

there's a few things that are going on.

For one, we will move away from using the zulip [1] as a public "long
post" platform and use this mailing list instead. Zulip is
interesting as a chat platform, but is a bit too unstable, is
_yet_ another app, and also doesn't allow for public anonymous
indexing (via search engines or archives) which makes it not
ideal for a qaul.net knowledge base.

We won't stay with sourcehut as a mail hoster forever either, the
plan is to get a mailman setup working at lists.qaul.net, at
which point we'll migrate this archive over.

We also now have ownership of the #qaul.net channel/namespace on
freenode, so feel free to join that chat. Anything long form to
seek feedback on should be posted on this list, anything else can
go in the IRC channel.


Until then: there's been a lot of work done on the core of
qaul.net and I felt that I should share the progress made with
both outsiders, as well as getting everybody on the team up to
speed.

The architecture we chose to separate driver, routing and
application layers into "netmod", "ratman" and "libqaul" + the
services model, has worked out really well so far. There's a lot
of problems that have come up that we were able to easily solve
because of the design work that went into the stack in before. I
explicitly want to thank lux for helping in a lot of the design!

The current state is that most of the service API is implemented
and generally sending queries into the network works as
expected. The routing protocol doesn't do frame deduplication
yet (which is important to not DOS a network with announcements),
and the libqaul core storage isn't persistent. Also the message
store is very inefficient to query. There's a few different
solutions we can look at here.

On _my_ immediate roadmap is to get the persistence internals
working, then aid with finishing the json:api endpoints so we can
test our initial UI. The next step beyond that is to get an
Android demo working for congress. Integrating libqaul into the
Android build system is going to be a challenge and also building
netmod drivers for WiFi Direct and bluetooth.


Anyway, lots to do. I'm happy to see the project progress. And am
also looking into how to break up knowledge silos. Right now I'm
the only person who has a good understanding of the entire
stack. I am thinking about how to fix this, and how our
documentation [2] could be improved.


- Katharina Fey

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[1]: https://qaul.zulipchat.com
[2]: https://docs.qaul.net/contributors/