How to run two Whisper systems Signal clients on Linux side by side

Running two signal clients on Ubuntu
Running two signal clients on Ubuntu without the stress, made one d.ark and other light themed to remind me which one is which

I’m very sure I’m not the only one with 2 mobile phones (heck I really have 3 actual active SIM cards in 3 phones but thats another story).

I have chosen not to use WhatsApp as their EULA doesn’t fit well with me, so instead I always suggest Whisper Systems Signal client. I have many reasons including a linux web client but I have been wondering why one client couldn’t support multiple accounts? Especially since you can easily and securely verify the phone to the desktop client, using a generated token.

I’ve been wondering if I could run two signal apps or run them under different system users… then it dawned on me, its using Google Chrome’s app framework, maybe I could use Open Source Chrome aka Chromium to do the same? Surprisingly without having to setup another user account for the Chrome store, I was able to download Signal again and make Chromium launch it.

Now I have 2 completely separate signal apps which are linked to different phones but using the same Ubuntu desktop environment.

I know it might seem obvious but there seems to be a few people asking for multiple users using a single signal desktop app. I also saw if it could be installed in Firefox, but it looks more tricky that just hitting install from an app store. Sure my tip will work for MacOSX and likely Windows too?

Little tip for friends and followers which I thought was worth sharing… Now get yourself on Signal

Distributed Social Networking, one day soon?

WordCamp 2011 Bulgaria

This has to be the ultimate standing in social networking. Distributed social networking is going to happen at some point but in the meanwhile, we all have to put up with these crappy social networks.

I read a few things recently which got me thinking about this again… The main one centres around this read write web piece.

The prospect of a distributed, interoperable, self-hosted network of publishing, reading and discussion tools is nothing new – but the idea is gaining a lot more support as more people react to recent news like FriendFeed’s sale to FacebookTr.im’s up and down and Twitter’s denial of service attacks. The tide may not be turning, but there’s sure to be some new waves of innovation that come out of this period of frustration.

The one which got me writing is the WordPress.com ability to do real-time blogging

Jabber (XMPP) is an open instant messaging protocol used by millions of people daily. At WordPress.com we use Jabber to instantly deliver new blog posts and comments to subscribers.

It for me is very intriguing… Its a lot more like how Jaiku use to be (I actually wonder what happened to jaiku engine?). The WordPress ability is nice but if they bring the same idea to self hosted wordpress blogs too, now that would be amazing…

Diso the project all about this went quiet back in 2010 it seems, which is a shame.

I fear Matt Mullenweg the great guy that he is, may not be able to provide the ultimate standing. The im.wordpress relies on wordpress.com too much for my liking. It would be great if there was a way to do most of the piping through other distributed means. I’d also love to see the ability to post comments/feedback through im? And why not? You got the persons details, and you can subscribe to the comments, why not replies?

Matt had to said recently in GigaOM

The Internet needs a strong, independent platform for those of us who don’t want to be at the mercy of someone else’s domain. I like to think that if we didn’t create WordPress something else that looks a lot like it would exist. I think Open Source is kind of like our Bill of Rights. It’s our Constitution. If we’re not true to that, nothing else matters.

The independent web is growing quite a bit. Although we have these great cloud servers for WordPress, the software that people run and install themselves is still as popular as ever. Our services are bringing more people online, but they’re also bringing more people who want to own their own space on the web–they want to own a house instead of rent an apartment. When we were first starting out, I thought, “Downloading and uploading software, managing databases, no one wants to do that.” But it turns out, a lot of people do.

Lets hope he follows through on that thinking…

The new face of presence: Twitter?

twitter message

Ok I've made up my mind. Twitter is very cool. I can't work out exactly what it is but it just works. The ability to reach one person or many people instantly is great. Its almost a social instant messenger.

I don't subscribe to the RSS feeds because its too quick for a news reader. I did try it out in Touchstone's rolling banner with the RSS but it was still not right. So I mainly consume Twitter through a im window using Gaim. This works best for me, because I can leave it open and watch it through the day. I can also reply or drop things into twitter quickly using jabber. And to be honest its works and looks like all the widget and gadgets which are popping up now.

The API which is available for Twitter is very simple but does what you'd expect. I really want to upgrade to Blojsom 3.0 so I can automaticlly send an update to twitter when I post a new entry which seemed to take David Czarnecki all of a day to write.

What makes twitter intestesting is the presence side of things. Its a step well beyond things like Presence messages on IM and Skype. There updated much more frequenly and you can nudge someone into revealing there precence. This is like the etique of leaving some a message on skype before calling them.

I actually really want to pull my current twitter message into my jabber status message and skype thought. That would be very useful. The thing I also thougth would be great is a summary view for friends which is mobile. It would also be good if Twitter adopted the @username syntax for sending private messages. Everyone seems to be doing it and its easier to remember.

The last thing which is interesting about twitter is the speed of delivery. Sam Sethi's now famous entry on Twitter was the spark which made me understand how fast twitter can be.

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Playing with Twitter, but I’m not all that happy yet

Twitter screenshot

After hearing Ryan Freitas talk about Twitter among other things, I've been trying out it out. If you don't know what Twitter is, check out Derek Powazek's description.

Twitter lets me SMS to a group all at once and creates a handy 'what I'm up to right now' insert for my site. A kind of in-situ, realtime, status message blogging. Fun!

So yeah its a good way to send short timely messages to a pool/group of friends. Those messages can be text messages (sms) or even im using jabber. It sounds really good but it has problems. Tantek posted up shots of ways to improve the pretty poor signup process. But I've been having problems registering my work mobile phone which is on O2 with Twitter. What also bugs me is the fact you can only register one mobile number. Yes I know its rare people have more that one mobile, but those who would use Twitter are much more likely to have 2 phones or 2 lines. My other issue is around adding your friends. Please please, allow me to add either my flickr network, upcoming network (why flickr and upcoming don't interop, is still beyond me), Plaxo contacts or even a Foaf file. I just can't be bothered to setup another network of friends in Twitter.

I do see the use of Twitter, specially for setting up adhoc geekdinners and getting people organised. But I would prefer to see Twitter used as an output point for messages. So I could send messages to it from almost any application or service and it would amplfy it to a certain group. Maybe it can do this already, it has an API so its certainly possible.

My username on Twitter is cubicgarden under the name of ian forrester, as you'd expect.

David Czarnecki has wrote a Twitter Plugin for Blojsom 3.0. Its currently in CVS but it will update twitter when there is an update or new entry to a blojsom blog. Damm I need upgrade to blojsom 3.0.

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