An introduction to the Solid ecosystem

Ruben Verborgh, Ghent Universityimec

Web Foundation Seminar, 13 September 2018

An introduction to
the Solid ecosystem

Ruben Verborgh

Ghent University – imec

Solid aims to give people back
their choice on the Web.

People should be free to share
whatever they want
with whomever they want,
while paying a fair price.

The Solid ecosystem enables you
to use the apps you need, while
storing your data wherever you want.

You own your data, and share it
with the apps and people you choose.

The Web strives to be universal
through independence of many factors.

You freedom to use the Web shouldn’t be influenced by:

The Web brings freedom of expression
to everyone across the world.

The Web brings permissionless innovation
at an unprecedented scale.

People started their own blogs and sites,
sharing things on their own terms.

© TestFunda

A generation of social platforms
helped people interact and share.

The Web has changed tremendously
in just a couple of years.

© Tim McDonagh

Our data has become centralized
in a handful of Web platforms.

The walled gardens of social media:
you have to move either data or people.

© David Simonds

These social media platforms
reduce the Web to television.

Facebook is actively trying
to become the Web.

© Danish Siddiqui / Reuters

Ironically, permissionless innovation
even allows platforms that prevent it.

The Facebook founder has no intention of
allowing anyone to build anything on his platform
that does not have his express approval.

Having profited mightily from the Web’s openness,
he has kicked away the ladder that elevated him
to his current eminence.

John Naughton, The Guardian
[photo of a ladder]
© Vinayak Shankar Rao

Without Net Neutrality,
these platforms gain even more power.

Decentralization in Solid is not needing
centralized platforms to enjoy the Web.

Different platforms tackle decentralization
at very different scales.

You can choose where you store
every single piece of data you produce.

Every piece of data can link
to any other piece of data.

PREFIX as: <>
PREFIX xsd: <>

<#ruben-likes-webfoundation> a as:Like;
  as:actor  <>;
  as:object <>;
  as:published "2018-09-13T13:00:00Z"^^xsd:dateTime.

You can grant apps and people access
to very specific parts of your data.

Separating app and storage competition
drives permissionless innovation.

Solid is not a company or organisation.
Solid is not (just) software.

[the Solid logo]

Anyone can build or host
software for Solid.

The Solid server acts as a data pod
that stores and guards your data.

A typical data pod can contain
any data you create or need online.

Solid clients are browser or native apps
that read from or write to your data pod.

Any app you can envision,
you can build with Solid.

The Solid server and several apps exist
and are usable for developers.

Solid is transitioning from research project
into an ecosystem backed by a start-up.

We will bring the Solid experience
to people all over the world.

October 2018
more about Inrupt
Fall 2018
developer toolkit & common UX
early 2019
MVP of the ecosystem

Solid lets you take control
over your personal data.

It breaks up silos on the Web
by linking to information
rather than harvesting it.

Your data, your apps, your choice.

An introduction to
the Solid ecosystem