A few weeks after emerging from invite-only status, social network Bluesky has taken another major step toward doing the thing that makes it more than just a Twitter X clone: it’s opened the doors for federation.

In a nutshell, that means the Bluesky network isn’t just going to be hosted on Bluesky’s servers anymore. Anyone can launch their own server. Don’t want to keep your personal data on the company’s servers? You can self-host or migrate to another third-party server. This is something Bluesky has been promising since launch, but it’s only starting to roll out in early access beginning today.

Bluesky isn’t the first social network built on the idea of a series of federated servers. That’s basically how Mastodon works too.

But Mastodon uses the open ActivityPub standard for federation: the same protocol used by decentralized Reddit, YouTube, and Flickr alternatives like Lemmy, Peertube, and Pixelfed.

Bluesky uses its own protocol called AT Protocol, or “atproto” which is not (currently) compatible with ActivityPub (although some developers have been working on a bridge that could enable some interoperability, for better or worse). And the company says some of the benefits include more user-friendly data portability: you can switch servers and all of your data comes with you.

But Bluesky’s protocol also gives the folks who operate a server less control over how their users will experience the network, since there are no “instance” feeds: by default users will encounter everything on the Bluesky network (although users and server operators both have access to moderation tools and blocklists.

It’s an interesting time for social networks… and to be honest, I barely have the energy to keep up on the latest developments. But  for what it’s worth, you can follow Liliputing on BlueSky or follow me on Bluesky or Mastodon (there’s also a Mastodon feed for all articles I publish on the site and another that’s theoretically for all articles from all Liliputing writers, but that one’s a bit wonky and only shows some posts).

Bluesky now supports federating (it’s not just a single central server anymore) [Bluesky]

Bluesky opens the doors for federation (you can host your own server), but notes that its AT Protocol is different from ActivityPub, which powers Mastodon, in key ways. Content, moderation, timelines, and other data are tied to accounts, not servers.

Announcing Windows 11 Insider Preview Build 26063 (Canary Channel) [Windows Blogs]

The latest Windows 11 preview builds bring support for WiFi 7, enabling features like using multiple bands simultaneously, wider bandwidth and improved throughput.

Here’s what’s new about the Fairphone 4 [Fairphone]

Fairphone rolls out updated camera software for the Fairphone 4, bringing speed, accuracy and stability improvements, better low-light performance and Super Night Mode to the camera app for the previous-gen phone.

Coming soon to PS VR2 [PlayStation Blog]

Sony is “testing the ability for PS VR2 players to access additional games on PC” with the goal of letting the VR headset work with PC games later this year. Up until now the PS VR2 has only supported the PS5 game console.

Almost a fully open-source boot chain for Rockchip’s RK3588! [Collabora]

Collabora’s Debian images now replace the previously-used closed bootloader with an open source binary. Collaborate notes that “there are still some missing parts,” and some known issues, but this is one step closer to being able ot boot GNU/Linux distributions on devices with this processor using a “fully open-source boot chain.”

Keep up on the latest headlines by following @liliputing_liliputing.com on Mastodon. You can also follow Liliputing on X and Facebook. We’re also on Bluesky now, but just barely.

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  1. It almost seems like Bluesky is really just trying to save on hosting by letting you pay for some of it in exchange for the pretense of making “the community” grow.

    1. Anyone trying to decentralize social would fall on their face, for the simple reason that in truth social never existed. It was and will be bots all the way. communication between peers is essentially forbidden. It is all a one way show. You hear me, I am not interested in hearing you. There is no to and fro. And that is understandable because it someone is presenting code, say then you can’t debug on his face. It is not a done thing. The only way is to not have source associations. So everything is treated as a rumour and then everyone weighs in anonymously.

  2. @liliputing_ worth noting what they are really talking about here is just one component of #Bluesky, there are other major ones that continue only to be hosted by the company. It won't become decentralized like #Mastodon just by people running a PDS. This is exemplified by the fact that you need to get on their Discord and ask for them to add you to even get your PDS included right now.

    Their messaging seems to very much be the corporate type where what they say isn't necessarily aiming for accuracy as much as painting things in a favorable light…