This is just a short update on decentralised photo dapps available right now, particularly Recall Photos, since writing an earlier post on Blockstack.
What is a Blockstack dapp? You can also read this quick overview here. There is also a cool video at the bottom of this post.
Recall Photos belong to an array of Blockstack-made dapps, accessed via any browser (this is the main link). They use different decentralised methods/blockchains, including the Bitcoin network itself.
You’ll need to create a quick Blockstack ID first, in order to use any of them, which comes with its own Bitcoin wallet.
So… where will my Recall Photos be stored?
At first, on a free hub run by Blockstack itself, but you retain the direct keys or control over your photos and data, and can specify or run your own Gaia storage hub.
More about Gaia:
Blockstack applications use the Gaia storage system to store data on behalf of a user. When the user logs in to an application, the authentication process gives the application the URL of a Gaia hub, which performs writes on behalf of that user. The Gaia hub authenticates writes to a location by requiring a valid authentication token, generated by a private key authorized to write at that location.
…Gaia’s approach to decentralization focuses on user-control of data and storage. If a user can choose which gaia hub and which backend provider to store data with, then that is all the decentralization required to enable user-controlled applications.
Read more on the Github for Gaia (scroll down for the main information.)
Slow, but easy to use
Recall Photos is remarkably easy to drop your photos into the app, although since it’s at this early stage, and using default storage, it’s much slower than normal photo cloud apps.
However, it’s well worth it for that full control and privacy over one’s photos. Ok, there’s no ton of features as yet like Google Photos, but hey, the time-stamping is the most important thing, and let’s face it, who uses a lot of the others, besides searching. However, Recall Photos does need to work on bringing more features like this.
You can use the app straight on a browser (or create a link to your Home Screen on your smartphone.)
Here’s hoping that this app and its open source tech continues to update and improve. Stay tuned for further updates or reports about rising alternatives to centralised photo-storage that start using Blockchain or IPFS-style storage.
Another one to try (I haven’t yet, as I assume it’s pretty similar to Recall) is Block Photos.
Here’s that broad video about Blockstack in general: