Yesterday I installed BitMessage as a test. I received a couple of message right off the bat, but had about 20 new ones this morning
As an addressable private message exchange system it wins on multiple fronts:
No server required
Because it is peer to peer, the infrastructure of the typical email exchange isn't needed.
Of course there are drawbacks, like to having a simple myname@server addressing structure. But you can also and are in fact encouraged to create multiple addresses that can be used for different purposes.
The BitMessage Whitepaper does a good job of explaining all the benefits and features of the system, so I won't replicate that here.
Encryption is built in to the system
Unlike encrypted email, where the headers are sent 'in the clear', none of that coveted 'metadata' is available without the keys to unlock the message
I'm under no illusions that the encryption can't be broken, but its nice to have it all built tight in, no more separate programs or copy pasting, and no more looking up keys.
As a side note, BM uses Elliptic Curve Cryptography, which as I understand it is sort of post-RSA cryptographic technology which, with smaller key sizes accomplishes exponential security.
Unattractive to Spammers
This is very interesting. You can use any BM address to send out 'broadcast messages', which can be received and decrypted by anyone who has 'subscribed' to your address.
Hello peer to peer twitter!
As with all technologies, adaption depends on the user Interface.
I took a bit of work to install on my Mac and the interface is very rudimentary. It doesn't even make sense to critique it.
Put an email like interface on this along with a twitter UI for subscriptions and I think this thing is a winner. A familiar UI will easily obfuscate what is going on behind the scenes.
You send and receive messages just like regular email
You subscribe to broadcasts and reply to them just like twitter
There's already one example of a web based UI [see picture above] that looks promising, although I couldn't get it to install correctly on my machine [yet].
I would pay money to have a desktop and mobile app that provides a functional UI for BM with obvious integration with address book contacts etc.
Looking at BitMessage, BitCoin and BTSync, it is clear to me that these peer to peer systems have a real future in distributing and exchanging data.
Independent developers will be able to create value in the apps they develop, which I think will be recognized by users who are tired of being the hamster in the wheel of the the 'tech-industry'.
I have added my BM address to my regular email signature. You can reach me at:
Decentralization = Freedom