A year after its launch on World Press Freedom Day, AKASHA has declared the first stages of its project a resounding success. AKASHA, which stands for Advanced Knowledge Architecture for Social Human Advocacy, is a next generation social network powered by Ethereum and the InterPlanetary File System (IPFS).
Founded by Mihail Alisie, co-founder of the Ethereum Project, AKASHA aims “to explore the applications and implications of a permanent web in the context of social networks, freedom of expression, creative perpetuity, and privacy for a better Web in service of humanity”.
AKASHA seeks to create the backbone for the nascent etherweb, which will give people more control over their information, content, and identities online. Though the project has started out in the form of a social network, it aims to evolve into a much larger undertaking with potential for solutions for many of the problems plaguing today’s internet such as censorship and loss of data.
The decentralized application “deploys a next-generation information architecture born from the fusion of Ethereum and the Inter-Planetary File System.” In addition, to being built on top of the Ethereum blockchain and IPFS, AKASHA’s technology stack consists of Electron, React with Redux, and Node.js.
Using these technologies enables the creation of “a planetary-scale information network immune to censorship by design, where your thoughts and ideas will echo throughout humanity’s existence.” According to AKASHA’s blog, the use of Ethereum and IPFS solves the problem of censorship right from the design level up until implementation. “With Ethereum we remove the need for servers, avoiding from design stage all the problems associated with censorship. With IPFS and its permanent web infrastructure, we ensure the access to information through a planetary-scale information network without central points of failure and bottlenecks.”
In the year since its launch, AKASHA has had 7000 people sign up to its platform. This is no mean feat considering they did not advertise the platform and all sign-ups are completely organic signaling real interest in the project. Now that is has become evident that a decentralized application of this kind is useful and viable, AKASHA is focusing its energies on specific changes that will improve the platform. These changes include enabling two-way third party integrations, making the DApp accessible through any IPFS node and making the code easier to read and to contribute to since there are plans to release the code as open source.
In addition to these changes, AKASHA is also setting its sights onto a digital token. However, they are looking to do more than just crowdfund through the token but also hopefully innovate and create the most effective and useful token for a social network possible. On AKASHA’s blog, CEO and Founder Mihail Alisie explained “Somewhat counter-intuitive given the current “ICO landscape”, the intention is not to simply create “a token” to raise funds- but to create a framework for multiple crypto-economic experiments. The main idea is revolving around changing various incentive layer parameters and parallel experimentation.”
Given the warm response to AKASHA’s platform over the past year, it will be interesting to see how the platform will grow in the coming months and how it will affect social media as well as crypto-economics.