Rosano joined us as the invited speaker for the second weekly video chat of the year, on January 14th, 2021. What's top of mind for Rosano right now is federated systems, zero data, web apps, information architecture, publishing, and decentralized funding, and we covered all of them in our discussion.

You can listen to the full discussion here (Boris being the main host voice you hear), or watch the video embedded at the end of this post.

We had a wide ranging conversation starting with his Zero Data Apps initiative: explaining and promoting #ownyourdata principles:

  • an app in which your data stays with you
  • you control where the data is stored
  • no spam, no captcha, no sign up, no passwords, bring your own identity
  • using open protocols for flexibility and interoperability
  • do what you want with your data at any time
  • your data is accessible forever even if the app stops working

Rosano lists Fission on the page, and is waiting for us to have an app list that can be automatically included on the page. Working on it!

All of the apps are "zero data", whether it uses remote storage, Solid protocol, Unhosted, or otherwise upholds the principles listed.

Including Fission team member Steven's Diffuse music player. We interviewed Steven about Diffuse way back in June 2019, before he even joined the team.

We had a great discussion that covered thoughts on how people use apps and what concepts are and aren't familiar to them. It was really inspiring to speak with Rosano about all of his apps, and the work that he's done with friends and others to introduce them to these zero data app concepts.

Kommit, Rosano's flashcard app (inspired by Anki)

Localizing not just interface, but also programming languages. Ramsey Nassar has created an Arabic programming language:

a programming language exploring the role of human culture in coding. Code is written entirely in Arabic, highlighting cultural biases of computer science and challenging the assumptions we make about programming. It is implemented as a tree-walking language interpreter in JavaScript.

Privacy preserving product analytics by Brave (via Helder)

Anagora "The [[Agora]] is a [[distributed knowledge graph]] and [[experimental]] [[social network]]." (by TBD)

Rosano's Launchlet, for customizing websites with JavaScript and CSS. Another area that we talked about for how to enable people to customize apps, and if there might be a specification to create. Started a wiki page on the forum about User Scripts and Styles.

Discussion on forking/cloning, in the context of Fission's upcoming App Cloning feature. The Fork N Go concept for Github - "Forking a website repository on GitHub designed to be easily used by others." (via Helder)

The Fund Button

Since we didn't do a screenshare during the live talk, here is a short video of the fund button and flows from Rosano's HyperDraft note taking app.

You can find links to the separate sections in the forum.

We talked about perhaps specifying this "zero data funding" method into a specification. Could use any sort of payment or donation system – e.g. Paypal, Patreon, Github Sponsors, Open Collective, etc.

This is something that Verifiable Credentials could potentially be used for: a "hasPaidForHyperDraft: true" value could be set for the user.


Due to a mistake in settings, the video only pins to Rosano during the recording, so you just get Boris' and James' disembodied voices while we look at Rosano. The audio recording above is the same content as in this video.

Open video chats happen most Thursdays 9am PST / 12pm EST / 1800 CET on a variety of topics, and everyone is welcome. View the full event listing on the forum »