Personal cloud Free Software

write the specification for an integrated, REALLY usable Free SW alternatives to centralized social networks and Web services


Short Summary

I am a freelance author, researcher and activist working on digital rights and Free Software issues. You can read about my work and background here.

The purpose of this campaign is to raise funds for the initial research work on the alternative to Gmail, Facebook, Dropbox and other services that I temporarily called "percloud". In a nutshell, this is about integrating existing Free Software to get one bundle that can run on any computer,  offering the same services of those portals, while being almost as easy to use as they are. To know more about it, how it would work and why I think it's different, much simpler and potentially bigger than other projects in this space, please read its overview, FAQ, roadmap, or... just look at this 10 slides percloud explanation at Slideshare!

What I need & What You Get

The hardest part of this project is to research and document properly, with enough detail (see the roadmap for more):

  • what Free Software tools should be used and why
  • design specification for the (few) parts that should be done just for this project
  • how to build and maintain it
I can do this in about four months, but only if I am allowed, that is funded, to work almost full time on it. This, when you consider current taxation and cost of life in Italy, plus fees here and (maybe) some travel expenses, is more or less where the 16K Euros figure comes from. If I get that money (and I won't get anything unless the target is reached!), you will get, not later than four months from when I get the funding, the complete specification online, with a free license and open for comments. At that point, funding for the following phases shouldn't be a problem. Again, for more details please see the overview, FAQ and roadmap.

The Impact

Making this happen will finally give a viable alternative to the many, many people who use centralized Web services, even if they know how limiting, ephemeral and against their privacy, only because there is nothing else with more or less the same ease of use. And since everything, from specifications to the actual software, will be available with open licenses, everybody will be able to adapt the system to their needs and/or to run it on whatever computer they want.

Other Ways You Can Help

If you can’t contribute to this project, no problem but please:

  • Spread the word as much as possible, even using the Indiegogo share tools.
  • Let me know your opinion!

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