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Skynet Community Update — July 2021 | by Sia and Skynet Blog | Jul, 2021

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Sia and Skynet Blog
Skynet Community Update — July 2021 by Sia and

Things look different since the last update. As you can see from the graphic above, we finalized our new look with a big rebrand. This update modernizes the Skynet wordmark, taking it away from the previous 80’s/”hasta la vista baby” vibes and into something that can carry a tech startup through an important growth phase.

We also did a huge re-design of our website, the easy way to interact with the Skynet brand and the decentralized Internet. This new website is sleek, letting you quickly upload and share files on Skynet and learn about our tech.

But more than that — below the surface — we’ve been changing in important ways. Business moves fast at a tech startup, and the path forward for Skynet is becoming more clear. David announced a new roadmap for the company. He showed off planned moves like performance upgrades and full IPFS feature parity, and what’s in store for Skynet in the near and not-so-near future.

We’re moving ahead on key new hiring initiatives. The Sia Foundation has been working as well, constructing its own team and refining its plan for the decentralized storage layer of the Internet.

Let’s get on with it.



Comms from the Skynet team


Community Spotlight

We released our new Skynet License that attempts to closely mirror the MIT License while also incentivizing and enabling sustainable development.

With faster speeds, longer pinning, and importantly, the foundation for future content and web monetization, premium accounts allow you to sign up for the decentralized future.

To go along with premium accounts, we are beyond excited to announce that Nebulous has now fully rebranded to Skynet Labs. We’ve got a new website, new wordmark, new color, and new guidelines for using Skynet assets in your projects! Read our rebrand post and check in on the new Skynet Brand Guidelines for your next Skynet project.

Announcing MySky, our decentralized identity protocol!

Just some of MySky’s capabilities include: you fully owning your identity, universal login across all Skynet apps and even centralized apps, controlling what apps access/share your data, and bringing your data (like followers, content, friend lists) with you from app to app.

And you can read David’s blog on how MySky takes ID to the next level.

“MySky makes heavy use of salting to keep the user’s data separated between applications, and also to give the user extra privacy when they want to create encrypted or hidden files.”

Be sure to catch up on our monthly Skynet community dev calls for April, May, and June!

We held our 2021 hackathon: Built to Explore — A Dream of the Future

With more than $25,000 in prizes, this unique event featured 3 phases all centered around content creation and sharing.

It was open to everyone — developers and non-developers. Read David’s announcement for more info.

We were excited to announce the winners of the final prizes for the build phase of the hackathon. When considering the winners, we looked at a few things:

  • Overall quality of the app
  • How much the app was used
  • Overall quality of content created by the app

Three apps really stood out to us — SkyTransfer, SkynetGram, and How About Skapp. SkyTransfer stood out to us because the bread and butter of Skynet has always been filesharing, and SkyTransfer is one of the most sophisticated file sharing applications ever built on Skynet. SkynetGram stood out because it was by far the most heavily used application. It had a really simple signup process, a really simple way to post images, and a really charming presentation of the content that other people had posted. All these things combined made it a clear crowd favorite with users.

In the end, we chose How About Skapp as the grand prize winner. The UI was very clean, the use of MySky was impressive, and the entire application felt very snappy. More importantly however, the app was used to generate a lot of very interesting ideas that could benefit Skynet in the long term, and generated a significant amount of engagement overall. We felt that the sheer quality of the content coming through How About Skapp was enough to put it in the lead, though certainly it was in very good company with the other runner-ups.

How About Skapp will be winning the $5,000 grand prize, and SkyTransfer and SkynetGram will each be taking home $2,000 for their performance during the explore phase. This is in addition to any prize money that was won at the end of the build phase. Congratulations to everyone!

How About Skapp: https://tirthahalli.hns.siasky.net/
SkyTransfer: https://skytransfer.hns.siasky.net/
SkynetGram: https://metformin10.hns.siasky.net/

SkyChess — @redsolver
WebGames IDE — @ericflo
Sky Bookmarks — Michael Muenzer
GiphyAF — Jordan Pinski
SkyGame SDK / Connect 4 — @stelballe
Arigale CMS — @bhanupratapsingh#6149

Honorable Mentions:
Rift — @parox (rift.sh)
SkyDrop — @wellhat & Tom

Skynet saw a lot of great projects for the ENCODE Hackathon! We had over 20 projects awarded for integrating Skynet in their app, but we want to highlight the prize winners of Skynet’s Sponsor Challenge.

To read more about the finale or watch the finalist presentations, check out ENCODE’s write-up.

Winner (200k SC):
SkyDrop — @wellhat @toxictom

Runner-Ups (75k SC each):
SiaEdit — @NathanG and co.

SkyNect-4- @stelballe

Also, 4 of the 8 ENCODE hackathon finalists used Skynet in their projects, so additional congratulations to finalists:

Skydrop — @wellhat @toxictom (SkyDrop)

Quadratic Treasury (2nd Place Hackathon Winner!)

MARStorage 2.0 — @DaWe

SiaNews + SiaEdit — @NathanG

We’re hiring for multiple positions! While some jobs are close to closing, it’s never a bad time to submit your application.

  • From Bitcoin and Sia to Elon Musk and Skynet’s decentralized web, The Street Analysts’ Josh Moir tracks David Vorick’s blockchain journey.
  • We were able to secure the Skynet Labs name on GitHub so we have transferred repos under the new name for brand consistency. Any SkynetHQ links should be auto redirected but it is encouraged to update any saved links. The final resting place for Skynet Labs’ code: https://github.com/SkynetLabs and https://gitlab.com/SkynetLabs
  • Use the new “built with Skynet” badge to showcase on your Skapp or website! Download it on the updated Skynet Brand Guidelines page.
  • A blog from David — Facebook is NOT free. We pay for it in more ways than we can imagine. “You don’t pay for Facebook with just your data or your attention. You pay for Facebook with your money and with your well being.”
  • Announcing our partnership with Akash Network! Decentralized storage meets decentralized computing for a new FULL STACK solution. The centralized cloud provider giants have held a monopoly on the tech space for decades…. but even giants can fall.
  • Another one from David! Read more below about combining the powers of Sia, Skynet, and MySky to build a new Decentralized CDN

The Sia Foundation Transparency Report (Q2 2021) is now available.

Frances is the Foundation’s new Operations Director. Frances previously worked with the Zcash Foundation, so we couldn’t have asked for a better fit. She’s already hard at work, helping us take the Foundation from a ragtag band of devs to a proper organization.

Nate, a familiar face in the Sia community, is joining as a backend developer. Drawing on his experience with SiaCentral, Nate will be focusing his efforts on the Sia host, aiming to making it more efficient, maintainable, and observable. He’s also quite excited about Utreexo, and will be helping me develop and test Sia’s implementation.

Lastly, I’m pleased to announce that James Prestwich is now advising the Foundation alongside Josh Cincinnati. We’ve known James for a long time (since his days at Storj!) but never had an opportunity to work together until now. James brings not only a vast breadth of high-level domain knowledge, but also a deeply technical perspective that can instantly deflate any crypto-bullshitter in 280 chars or less.

Sia v1.5.6 was released! As a reminder, this is the final release of siad that includes Skynet-specific code. Going forward, Skynet functionality will only be available in the new skyd daemon, maintained by Skynet Labs. siad will retain existing renter/host/wallet/etc functionality.

New blog post from Sia Foundation President Luke Champine on Utreexo and how it applies to Sia.

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