It's 2023, are you still blogging? Is your blog content carrier a closed third-party platform like medium and dev.to, or a self-built open source blog framework on GitHub Pages?
Today, I would like to nominate one of the coolest, most liberating, most futuristic, and most limitless blogging solutions in my mind - xLog.
(The picture shows RSS3's xLog.)
It is an application product based on the Crossbell blockchain. The underlying technical framework includes Ethereum, InterPlanetary File System, smart contracts for social, etc.
Some may say, blockchain, IPFS, Web3, these words sound far away from our ordinary users, and even often equated with the "digital currency scammers". But in reality, speculators are only the hustle and bustle part in this space, and we should see those who are really fighting for the "ideal Web3". As completely open source and focusing on Web3 data controlled by users social ecological products, Crossbell blockchain and xLog are one of them.
This ecosystem has just launched at the moment and there is not enough content on the web to introduce it. You can read these articles to learn about them:
- The First On-Chain and Open-Source Blogging platform - xLog introducing xLog.
- Here Comes crossbell.io - crossbell-blog Introducing Crossbell.io, a Web3 social product focusing on "Own Your Data".
Simply put, your information is stored on the blockchain (meaning secure and permanent); your privacy is protected; and the ecosystem of the chain makes social interaction as full as possible.
But it's better to brag about it than to actually experience it. Even if the reader has never been exposed to Web3, this article will take you from scratch to experience xLog and serve as your first lesson in Web3.
(Declaration of interest: I am part of the Crossbell and xLog development and maintenance team. All of our work is open sourced on GitHub)
1. Prepare a Wallet
Wallet is your identity credentials at Web3. Don't be put off by the word 'money' - it stands for your 'assets', and assets in Web3 means more than just 'money', it means 'data'. We believe that data is priceless and needs a wallet to keep it safe. So don't worry, Crossbell, where xLog is based, is completely free and is a blockchain project focused on 'data assets'.
How do I keep and manage my wallet? There is a lot of software available. The internet is also flooded with tutorials. This article is not a starter book, so I'll be very subjective and recommend one of the most used wallets - Metamask.
Metamask has a browser extension. We just go to its official website to download and install it.
Once you have downloaded and installed this wallet management software, please follow the software guidelines and create your first wallet. I won't go over the process here, if you get confused during the process, it must be their issue...
2. Open xLog
Open the xLog website. Click Connect to connect to your wallet.
3. Get Some $CSB
After logging in, you will find an "insufficient $CSB" message in the top right corner of the page.
Just as money is required for activities in reality, a fee is required for activities (transactions) on the blockchain. the fee for the Crossbell blockchain is $CSB. you may be wondering why Web2 sites don't require a fee to be active? The answer is that your "data privacy" is inadvertently already being traded as an alternative fee.
The good news is that $CSB is currently available for a small amount for free. After clicking, we jump to the Faucet page. You can think of the faucet as "a foundation for users with insufficient balances". At present, the faucet will give each new user a gift of $0.02 CSB, which can be reclaimed after running out of balance.
We follow the instruction on the page and enter the address, (you may need to send a tweet to verify), to receive some $CSB.
Congratulations! 0.02 CSB has arrived!
4. Create a Site
We then go back to xlog, and click "dashboard".
Next, it will jump to a page that will allow us to create a new site.
(Note that "subdomain" is unique globally.)
Click the Create button, wait a few more seconds, and the Metamask browser extension will pop up a transaction window asking for confirmation. Yes, each on-chain activity is in the form of a "transaction" that costs a small amount of the $CSB we just received as a processing fee. As you can see, this transaction will cost 0.000332 CSB.
Let's click the Confirm button.
After about a few seconds of waiting, the page will jump to the dashboard page. We'll click Create a Post and we'll be ready to write our first blog post.
Once you have written your article, click the Publish button to publish it. Then, Metamask will pop up again asking for a fee to complete this transaction.
Click "Confirm" and our post will be published successfully. Congratulations, you've published a blog post on the blockchain!
At the end of each post, you can see the transaction hash, IPFS link, and other Web3 information for that post. It's just so cool.
5. Other Features: Browse, Interact with Posts, Follow authors ......
Open your site to play with! Mine is: song.xlog.app. (You can also bind your custom domain in settings.)
When browsing other people's posts, you can give the author LIKE, MINT (cast the post as an NFT), COMMENTS under each post.
You can even follow the author.
After following, you can view subscribed feeds on crossbell.io . (Notification system, RSS feeds, etc. will be supported in the future.)
6. Leave at Any Time - Data Under Your Control
Many 'pseudo' decentralized apps still have a firm grip on your data, but in the Crossbell ecosystem, your data is truly in your hands.
On the settings page, click on the "Export data" tab and you will be able to export all your user data in just one click, including your blog posts of course, even well saved in Markdown format.
Congratulations on making your home on the blockchain. Looking forward to your creations.
Feel free to also join the Crossbell community and talk with us!
- Discord: https://discord.gg/4GCwDsruyj
- In Discord we talk about whatever we want. In addition, the xLog channel hosts occasional prize creation events. The ongoing one is "What is your ideal future Internet/Web3 in five years?".
- Twitter: https://twitter.com/_Crossbell
- Some exciting new features and plans will be released to the public on Twitter.
- GitHub: https://github.com/orgs/Crossbell-Box/discussions
- GitHub Discussions is where our engineers and users work together to discuss and make decisions on technical solutions.