Decentralized online social networks

 Decentralized Online Social Networks

Online social net­works (OSN) have attrac­ted bil­lions of users. This enor­mous suc­cess is not without pro­blems, thou­gh; the cen­tra­li­zed archi­tec­tu­res of OSNs, sto­ring the users’ per­so­nal data, pro­vi­des ample oppor­tu­ni­ty to pri­va­cy vio­la­tion. Starting in 2011, Giuliano Mega, Gian Pietro Picco and I have star­ted to inve­sti­ga­te alter­na­ti­ve approa­ches, based on open, decen­tra­li­zed alter­na­ti­ves.

We tac­kled the fol­lo­wing research que­stion: is it pos­si­ble to build a decen­tra­li­zed OSN over a social over­lay, i.e., an over­lay net­work who­se links among nodes mir­ror the social net­work rela­tion­ships among the nodes’ owners? We fir­st stu­died whe­ther  one fun­da­men­tal pie­ce of OSN (the dis­se­mi­na­tion of pro­fi­le upda­tes) can be imple­men­ted in a decen­tra­li­zed way [P2P11]. We later inve­sti­ga­ted the effec­ts of churn and fai­lu­res on the avai­la­bi­li­ty of such pro­fi­les [P2P12]. We final­ly eva­lua­ted whe­ther an hybrid approach based on both peer-to-peer and cloud ser­vi­ces could pro­vi­de both pri­va­cy and per­for­man­ce [P2P13]; the answer was posi­ti­ve. Apart from his Ph.D. the­sis, the work of Giuliano is sum­ma­ri­zed in a 2018 paper publi­shed in IEEE Transactions of Network Science and Engineering [TNSE18].


[P2P11]   Giuliano Mega, Alberto Montresor, and Gian Pietro Picco. Efficient dis­se­mi­na­tion in decen­tra­li­zed social net­works. In Proc. of the 11th IEEE P2P Conference on Peer-to-Peer Computing (P2P’11), pages 338–347. IEEE, August 2011.[PDF][Bibtex].

[P2P12]   Giuliano Mega, Alberto Montresor, and Gian Pietro Picco. On churn and com­mu­ni­ca­tion delays in social over­lays. In Proc. of the 12th IEEE P2P Conference on Peer-to-Peer Computing (P2P’12), pages 214–223. IEEE, Tarragona, Spain, September 2012. [PDF][Bibtex].

[P2P13]   Giuliano Mega, Alberto Montresor, and Gian Pietro Picco. Cloud-assi­sted dis­se­mi­na­tion in social over­lays. In Proc. of the 13th IEEE P2P Conference on Peer-to-Peer Computing, P2P’13. IEEE, Trento, Italy, September 2013. [PDF][Bibtex].

[TNSE18]   Giuliano Mega, Alberto Montresor, and Gianpietro Picco. Social over­lays meet the cloud: A hybrid archi­tec­tu­re for pro­fi­le dis­se­mi­na­tion in decen­tra­li­zed social net­works. IEEE Transactions on Network Science and Engineering, 2018.[PDF][Bibtex].