Bonum Certa Men Certa

Geminispace/GemText/Gemini Protocol Will be Half a Decade Old This Coming Summer, GNU Name System (GNS) is Now RFC 9498

posted by Roy Schestowitz on Nov 22, 2023,
updated Nov 22, 2023

RFC 9498:

The GNU Name System, RFC 9498

THREE years ago we adopted Geminispace/GemText/Gemini Protocol and converted all past pages, both wiki and blog posts, into GemText files to be served over Gemini Protocol. This effort, a dedicated endeavour which took a few months, has paid off because it opened up Techrights to new and mostly tech-oriented audiences - people who have considerable impact on the direction present and future Net technologies may take. Gemini has since then inspired people to make 'imitations' (a form of flattery, one might hope). Around the same time we adopted Geminispace/GemText/Gemini Protocol we also explored GNUNet and several more options. The GNU Name System, we might add, has just been formalised as RFC 9498 (GNS), so we might look at that next. 3 years ago GNUNet openly stated it wasn't (yet) ready for adoption as a stable or predictable system. It was fun for hacking, but still work in progress.

We've checked and revisited every year since then. We're patient.

So according to the latest roadmap, "Stable and usable documentation" and "GNUnet packages available and up-to-date in distributions" may come some time in the future and "Stable release" will then follow (after version 1.x) with "Onion routing with RPS".

GNU 40

They boast the "GNU 40" image right now in their Web site (taken from their site overnight) - a credible badge of longevity as very few software projects last that long. Recall the Internet Hall of Fame induction speech from Richard Stallman. We shared that here 2 months ago, though the speech had just turned 10. It's a reminder that Dr. Stallman shaped the Net (and also the Web) with his work in the 1980s and the 90s. He inspired the Web itself, not to mention Creative Commons, Wikipedia and so on.

Now there's GNUNet. A couple of years ago we convinced Dr. Stallman to at least consider Gemini for the GNU and FSF sites, but later he said they lacked resources to put that into practice (the FSF was under considerable attacks at the time). He didn't turn down Gemini, he actually did look into it. But maybe GNUNet is the way forward?

"This is our roadmap," the GNUNet roadmap page states upfront. "We distinguish between short, medium and long term goals. The roadmap is subject to change and its primary purpose it to indicate the current work in progress and future work as well as the path to a stable release. Goals which are currently in active development are marked in bold."

For now, Gemini generally works for us.


Techrights served over 20k Gemini requests in the past couple of days and Geminispace/GemText/Gemini Protocol will turn 4.5 years old exactly 4 weeks from now. Adoption of Gemini continues to be OK. Gemini is still growing, according to Lupa, which further states: "2325 (89.8 %) capsules are self-signed, 207 (8.0 %) use the Certificate Authority Let's Encrypt..."

This means that less than 10% outsource "trust" to GAFAM et al.

GNU Name System logo

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