[Social] Opera Unite: webserver in a browser

Dan Brickley danbri at danbri.org
Tue Jun 16 02:32:39 CDT 2009


Opera just announced this -

http://dev.opera.com/articles/view/an-introduction-to-opera-unite/
http://labs.opera.com/news/2009/06/16/
http://unite.opera.com/

Basically they expose webserver via the browser, and it seems also offer 
some proxying of this into public URIs like 
http://mymac.chrismills.operaunite.com/

I'm crossposting this to the XMPP Social list and the W3C SocialWeb XG 
list, since the intro in http://labs.opera.com/news/2009/06/16/ has some 
interesting motivation re social network and data portability, and I've 
lately been wondering about design decisions where I'm setting up 
personal/domestic computing APIs and feel drawn to XMPP rather than HTTP 
mainly due to NAT/Firewall traversal issues: XMPP services on a laptop 
can be universally addressed, unlike HTTP services. So I wanted to ask - 
is there a XEP spec for proxying HTTP over XMPP? Would this be relevant 
to Opera Unite scenarios such as the following?

"""Social networking is important, but who owns it — the online real 
estate and all the content we share on it? How much control over our 
words, photos, and identities are we giving up by using someone else’s 
site for our personal information? How dependent have we become? I 
imagine that many of us would lose most of our personal contacts if our 
favorite Web mail services shut down without warning. Also, many of us 
maintain extensive friend networks on sites like MySpace and Facebook, 
and are, therefore, subject to their corporate decisions via “Terms of 
Service” and click-through agreements. Furthermore, what does it mean 
anyway to be connected to hundreds of our “closest” friends? What about 
our real social networks, the people we want to interact with on a 
regular basis (like once a week, or even every day)? Why are online 
solutions to help us with our real-world social needs so few and far 
between?

We are connected to a Web that has democratized much and is an amazing 
source of information. However, "the wisdom of the crowd," along with 
the notion that our data ought to live on other people's computers that 
we don't control, has contributed to making the Internet more 
impersonal, anonymous, fragmented, and more about "the aggregate" than 
the individual. In fact, quite the opposite of the original promise. For 
too long, we’ve been going online to connect to each other, but 
sacrificing intimacy as a result."""

thanks for any thoughts,

Dan


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