We’re optimistic about 2021. The year has been good to us so far — but we also see so many things turning around in the world at large. Vaccines are defeating viruses, and crypto acceptance is surging. People are understanding why decentralization matters, and Skynet has been making incredible strides.
Our team has grown with Daniel and Nicole, and I’m really proud of how these two new folks have grown into their roles. They’ve already left their marks in impressive ways and will help Skynet grow at a critically important time in our history.
Despite these new additions, part of the laser-focus on Skynet means giving Sia room to breathe. Last time we talked about the Sia Foundation, it was theoretical. Now it’s a reality. We’ll talk more about that soon.
These are always long posts, but we’ll try to keep it succinct enough while highlighting some of the best accomplishments from the team and community.
Let’s get on with it.
In this update
Comms from the Skynet team
Skynet is about to experience some of the most exciting moments of its life.
Skynet turns one
1 million unique users. 5 million uploads. 25 million downloads. Hundreds of decentralized apps. You’ve helped us build this revolution in just 1 YEAR. You all have been the backbone of some of the very best innovation, discussions, and collaboration. Thank you for fighting with us for a better, freer future!
Community Dev Calls
You can listen to the dev calls for November, December, January, and February!
Sign up for the Developer Newsletter to stay in touch with everything technical.
It is with great excitement that we announced the winners of the SkyDB hackathon. Some of you may have seen the chatter in #skynet from the demo day, but this was an incredibly innovative hackathon with project after project that blew us away. In total, we have selected 14 different winners, because we just couldn’t be happy with giving some of these projects participation prizes.
Here’s that post in Medium, if the SkyFora link gives you a hard time. And if you want to re-watch the demo day presentations, you can find that here.
The new support center
Announcing Skynet’s new and improved support site.
Getting started? If you’re a developer, student, or just Skynet-curious, this is your ultimate Skynet Guide.
Our next sponsored hackathon
We’re sponsoring Hack the System, a 10-week blockchain hackathon run by Encode Club, aimed at university students and hackers.
Register now! Learning has started, and hacking begins Monday March 29th. Devs, non-devs, students, and professionals are all welcome!
The Sia Foundation is in motion, and you can join the discussion in the #foundation channel of the Sia Discord. Luke is moving forward with the logistics involved in building a completely new organization, and has his eyes on the first new dev hire. Nothing is locked in just yet, but the gears are moving.
The hardfork was a resounding success. All Sia network infrastructure like exchanges and pools upgraded.
We put together a quick guide to help you deal with Sia-related fork issues. And we also have a general guide for info on the fork.
The new Sia forums
We’ve launched a new forum for the Sia community. The forum will serve as a home for long-form discussion of the Sia platform, including core development, Skynet, third-party apps, non-technical Foundation initiatives, and more. Importantly, we are also designating the forum as the official venue for Foundation proposals.
New Sia releases
Download the latest Sia release from the Sia website.
Sia v1.5.5 is out! This release includes new download code that improve throughput and consistency, as well as the usual bug fixes and minor improvements. For more details, check out Matt’s blog post.
In addition to the usual upgrades, this release included the hardfork code. For more details on the release, check out Matt’s blog post. In tandem with this release, Luke prepared a blog post on the Sia Foundation, reiterating our plans going forward, the relationship between the Foundation and Skynet Labs, and how you can get involved.
This hardfork established the Sia Foundation. You can read our official press release here.
A new way to learn
We’ve got a great new tool for the community. The Sia Support Center has been completely overhauled with a new service called GitBook. Our docs have a new look, new features, and new content. Read about it here.
Comms from the Skynet team
Matt was on the Finding Genius podcast! It was great for anyone interested in data silos, Skykeys, and why you should build on Skynet today.
This is an awesome podcast episode for anyone interested in big upcoming Skynet updates and ethics around decentralization. Specifically, David covers Skynet accounts, content monetization, and what many people are getting wrong about decentralized social media.
We’ve been publishing short videos featuring different categories of Skynet apps, and you can find them all in this playlist.
Daniel spoke at EthDenver on ‘Web3 and Skynet’. Watch it here.
Blog and Announcements
We announced a partnership with Gitcoin and the Open Web Collective aimed at helping Skynet applications grow from side projects to full time products.
Fil wrote about the Sia antfarm, an extensive testnet that helps us run predefined scenarios like version upgrades or to test an application that is being built on top of Sia.
What’s the magic behind SkyDB? And how does it relate to the Registry? Daniel explains how SkyDB works to bring mutability to Skynet data.
Excited to share the launch of dLinks that lets you create a fully decentralized profile to all your content online, built using Skynet and Handshake! You can build yours now. Read more!
Puma Browser now has native HNS support! Which means it can resolve HNS names and dLinks in browser. For those who aren’t familiar with Puma Browser, it is a fast and private mobile browser. You can download it here.
Back in March 2020, D.tube announced support for Skynet as a decentralized file storage solution for your videos. Use the Peer-to-Peer option to store D.tube videos on Skynet like this. Phil Campbell — a content creator and one of D.tube leader nodes — wrote about his experience, motivation, and benefits of using this decentralized solution. Read more.
Nicole wrote a blog on the Ugandan internet shutdown and how we can pull through Decentralization as a guiding philosophy for how we empower others.
We just published a guest post from redsolver about their experience building on Skynet during the SkyDB hackathon! Learn about SkyFeed, their decentralized Twitter-style dapp built with designer Julian!
What is Skynet? Why should I build on it? And how can I make money from my work? If you’re new to Skynet or just want to learn more, check out this brilliant Skynet Guide by David Vorick!
We announced our collaboration with Streambed Media! Because every creator deserves to own and control their content. You’ve seen what Skynet can do in just one year. Now’s your chance to help build a better internet. Doesn’t matter if you’re a dev or non-dev, student or professional, there’s a place for you here.
Just a few of the many incredible community contributions we wanted to highlight!
Don’t forget to check out the new SkynetWiki! This community-managed project was possible through the combined, tireless efforts of many. It gives you a holistic view of the entire Skynet/Sia ecosystem and provides guides for a ton of helpful things.
Bifrost Cloud is now in production! Bifrost let’s you interact with Sia via S3 API and a credit card.
StoreWise reached a milestone of their partnership with ClearCenter by delivering the first production units of their ClearPhone cell phone that uses Sia as storage backend.
redsolver and Julianm made public their Skynet-based social network
SkyFeed: a fully decentralized microblogging platform akin to Twitter.
Crypto_Rocket (SkySpaces, Skapp) released a big update for his app
SkySpaces: a tool for uploading content and backups, organizing collections and private/public sharing. The new version is a now fully hosted on Skynet, has new UI and landing page, search functions and players for audio, video, images and slides.
SkyBrain, a social network to store memories and connect with other users through “brain connections”.
DubiDocs: a live text processor (similar to Word) hosted on Skynet and integrated with SkyID.
sia-bootstrap, a tool that allows developers to initialize a Sia daemon, bootstrap the blockchain and unlock the wallet in an unattended fashion, also integrating the daemon with
We just published a guest blog post from @riqi about their hackathon winning Skapp Piece!
Skybrain released an update allowing for simpler to read links and easier to find recommendations.
Skydroid updated with translations for four languages and streamlined download sizes.
Filebase announced a new integration with SimpleBackups, an all-in-one server & database backup automation service.
Covalent published an article on the SkynetWiki comparing the many dstorage projects on the market. It’s a great way to learn more about the competition, ecosystem, and why Sia is number 1.
SkyLearn launched! SkyLearn is an online Python coding app working on Skynet.
It’s time to…
We’ll see you back in the summer for our next update. We should have much more Foundation info and at least one huge Skynet update. There’s so much more to find by staying connected to our social channels: Discord, Twitter, and Reddit.
Until next time.