The EUShop.NET Project (Press release)
ActivityPub enabled decentralized Shopping Platform where everybody can run his own shop instance
- Single static binary solution for Linux, Mac and Windows, Apps for Android and IOS. No technical skills required for setup
- No domain and static IP requirement by using Tor sync for dynamic IP connected shops. Tor connected shops are anonymous
- Supports physical and fully automated digital download products. Sell whatever you like. Your shop, your products!
- Fiat and Crypto Curency payments supported. Accept, Euro, USD, Paypal, Stripe, Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Dash and others. Plugin system for additional providers.
- Shop system includes all requirements for EU VAT, GDPR and billing/reporting requirements. For sure sales tax are supported too, but to be EU ready is essential for EU companies!
- Unlock the power of open source software and never be locked in in proprietary solutions. We believe in FOSS software
Since the W3C Recommendation for ActivityPub it is clear that ActivityPub will be the federation protocol of the future. There are already a lot of great projects out there using the protocol and the Fediverse is growing fast. This website (https://fediverse.network/) shows that there is already a lot going on on public visible instances.
For sure, Mastodon, an decentralized Open-Source Micro Blogging System actually is the leader in instances and users. Karls instance is listed there too and since changing from Facebook and Twitter to Mastodon and Matrix (messenger, voice, video, team collaboration and messaging) he never had one thought to move back. Actually people are developing solutions for single user and multi user blogs, social networks, image sharing (PixelFed), video sharing (Peertube) and a lot more. A massive trend away from central data silos has started and smart people are really interested in getting back control over their data as user and as service operator.
The important point when using ActivityPub is the control over your own data and the decentralization. You can host your own instance and communicate with users on other instances. All data are on your instance, no central control. Other users are able to subscribe to your account and see your posts in their timeline. No central control, no central tracking and data collecting. And furthermore an unfiltered timeline! A chronological list of things users has subscribed too. No central algorithm filtering the users timeline! ActivityPub gives the Internet back to their users!
Why Karl had the EUShop.NET project idea
Karl, who founded CTS GMBH (https://cts.at) in 1985, is a huge fan of decentralization and Open Source. CTS is very successful and Karl still owns 100% of the shares. Even more he is sure, that it was a brutal mistake of politics and businesses letting some single companies grow that huge, so they nearly can control every aspect of the Internet. Karl thought a long time about a different ways of business directories, product presentation and sales without moving the customers data to third parties. People and companies must be able to manage their data on their own instances again. But others must still have an easy way to subscribe to companies or products. ActivityPub was needed to complete the idea, combining all of these ideas into one project. By running an own instance the shop owner is able to manage all data on his instance, while users are able to subscribe to companies or products they like.
Features of the EUShop.NET project
In a lot of discussions, Karl always stated that decentralized software must be usable for non-techie users. These people have no idea of firewalls, NAT, port forwarding, DNS and the difference of dynamic and static IP addresses. The industry trained them to – Setup – Continue – Continue, OK – and all should be done. It must not be required to setup an own system or server for small instances and it must work on dynamic IP connectivity.
To circumvent the restrictions of dynamic IP addresses and to avoid router configuration by non technical educated users it is required that syncing via Tor is included in the software. By using Tor it is possible to run the shop on every system, worst case on a mobile phone using 4G or upcoming 5G connectivity. For bigger installations shop must scale up to database clusters with HA failover frontends.
The technical base will be:
- released as Open Source Software
- single static binary solution, probably written in Go. Copy binary, start, run!
- using IPv4 and IPv6 on connectivity with static IP address
- using Tor to offer ActivityPub protocol on systems with dynamic IP and possible anonymous instances if required
- federate with standard ActivityPub solutions like Mastodon an others
- Talk to other developers for Tor support for other ActvityPub solutions, e.g. Mastodon
- SQLite for small instances and Postgresql support for bigger ones
- support for Postgresql cluster und multi failover frontends
- software should run on Linux, Mac and Windows 7+
Fediverse users will be able to
- ordering via web using https protocol, Tor browser and EUShop.NET App
- subscribe to products for product updates and information via ActivityPub. This will work for all ActivityPub clients, so e.g. Mastodon users will be able to subscribe to EUShop.NET products from their selected instances
- subscribe to companies via ActivityPub. Postings from companies will show in the timeline
- see companies and products others subscribed in the federated timeline of their fediverse instance.
The shop features
- shop system including all requirements for EU VAT, GDPR and billing requirements
- supporting digital download and physical goods
- product presentation with test, main image and additional images
- product categories
- administration interface for shop owner to manage products, orders, download permissions aso.
- payment provider plugin system (pre compilation)
- support Paypal, Stripe, Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Dash and manual Payments (e.g. bank transfer)
- creates all reports required for EU law financial reports
- API, plugin system (pre-compile) and export/import possibility for customers, products, pricing, orders, order status, customer messages
To be able to have a legal start, Karl’s CTS GMBH will provide everything required to be legal with financial and business law. If the project grows and we are able to receive enough payments to operate by itself, EUShop.NET will be changed to an non-profit organization based in Austria. Going this way we are able to work on the project, find core-team members and collect money to pay the core-team immediately.
We will place an updated core-team member list on the EUShop.NET webpage soon.
The project by itself will be fully open source and code will be released on Github or similar. But to be able to finalize the project with a timeline the funding for at least 2 years development must be fixed, otherwise there will be no possibility to pay the full time Go developers we need to hire for the project. A project, complex like this, including all of the EU law stuff must stand on solid feet to be able to deliver a great system to the public. Without the funding, no timeline is possible.
- 2018 12 – After checking the available software, we decided to start EUShop.NET!
- 2019 01 – Finished web site, create profiles on Github, Mastodon, Matrix, aso.
- 2019 02 – Getting the core team together! Specialists with proven Startup experience are fixed!
- Q2 2019 – Start collecting money for the project. We are able to receive IBAN, Paypal and Bitcoin Payments directly. Maybe we open some Patreon Account too.
- Q4 2019 – publish detailed project roadbook and plans, show a reference software
- Q2 2020 – first alpha release
- Q3 2020 – first beta release
We will create a community on our Matrix Server. Within this community we will setup different rooms for the core-team, committers and interested users. The room address will be shown here soon.
There is always the possibility to send us an e-mail at email@example.com