👋 Hey there! The documentation, alongside the app, is in early beta. If you see any mistakes or typos, please let us know.

🤔 Frequently Asked Questions

What crypto does Aether use? Is it a blockchain?

Aether is not a blockchain, nor is it based on one. Rather, it is a software stack purpose-built for this task. Aether is a peer-to-peer flood network that distributes a content graph. This content graph is brought to life at every node based on that specific node’s desires. This is what allows Aether’s users to be ultimately sovereign: they have control on how this content graph is compiled into communities, threads, posts, votes, and so on.

If one would be to force the blockchain metaphor, Aether can be described as an arbitrary number of blockchains that its users select based on their interests1. The verification process happens on a per-entity basis, not on a per-block basis, therefore it can progress atomically without relying on other, possibly-not-present blockchains.

It does not rely on a distributed consensus, nor does it have blocks, which makes it not bottlenecked in terms of data entry into the network. This makes it theoretically capable of handling millions of simultaneous users in a fast and efficient manner.

It is also a network where every user is ultimately in control of what it sees. Every node sets their own rules on what types of content it is willing to accept, for example, a node can say that it wants to accept only the strongest, most excruciating proof-of-work. Or another node can say that it will accept anything that has procured even the smallest. A node can say that he is willing to accept and distribute any community, another can say that it is only willing to distribute communities its user(s) follow. 2

Aether is a client of c0 subprotocol of Mim protocol, and the protocol specification is public. The proof of work it uses is a modified Hashcash.

Aether does not involve any cryptocurrencies, nor does it mint any3. There will not be an ICO, nor a token sale. If you’d like to support Aether, this is the best way to do it.

1 Every community is its own genesis “block”, over which other entities are added.

2 For starters, though, it is best to not touch any of these settings — there are settings, when configured without much thought, which other nodes will consider as an attack, and ban your IP address from the network.

3 Crypto currencies are great — but it is not something that is within Aether’s scope. When there is money involved in posting content, user-generated content inevitably veers towards what that makes the most money, and that kind of content is rarely insightful, interesting, or civil.