Thicket development continues to march onward to its final goal of being a decentralized media delivery service based around STEEM and IPFS. The focus this time around has been on adding more of the social and gaming features that have been talked about in former posts. As an added bonus, near the end of the post I'll go over my plans for monetization.
The first thing people see once Thicket launches is the Dashboard, an at a glance interface that gets the user right back into the action of their recently played games, check out who is online, or listen to the newest artist or tracks on Thicket. I'm sure some of the keener eyed readers would have noticed that the Musical aspects are still blank, and that the friends and following area is chalk full of users that are probably NOT using Thicket.
You are correct on both counts.
The Friends and Following code is at current only concerned about the people I follow that follow me back on STEEM which is the most common way of considering a person as a "Connection." Its also worth noting that Thickets sights aren't just set on STEEM but everyone capable of installing software on their computer. With that said steem users will still need to create an OpenSeed account. Once you have an account you can link (soon to be better automated) your STEEM account to OpenSeed which will unlock more features and services.
As far as the Music area not being complete. I'm currently reworking some of the code used to query the server for new music to make things faster and more fault tolerant. Once its done that will be much less blank.
The games interface is finally taking shape as I have most of the needed backend code now ready to accept developers and their games. Though there are still a few issues that need to be sorted.
As it stands, games are launched directly from clicking on the "game art". However, there is no "Information screen" yet with will be paramount for developers to get feedback and funding for their game. Once this screen is complete, and the upload / download services are stabilized I will be approaching several game development communities to get their games added to the system. The games will be hosted on IPFS and should be fully playable (within reason) even when your internet is down. ( Unlike some other services ;) )
As an added benefit to playing a game through Thicket is the "runner" that communicates back to the local Thicket instance to handle background music and other services that can sometimes slow down game development. These features will be highlighted in future posts as I have a few games that could benefit from the music integration.
Leaves, Seeds, and Trees
-- or why extended metaphors are fun --
From the start Thickets main goal was to give the decentralized community a front end for media that is at least functionally on par with Spotify and Valves Steam, but one where users, developers, and artists feel equally rewarded for being a part of the service. To that end it is logical and ethically sound to reward the developers and artists with some sort of monetary reward.
Note: Things in this section are still being considered and tweaked. Thicket will not take money from anyone other than myself until I know the process is secure and reliable.
Leaves are the standard transferable "token" currency within Thicket which are bought by the user using either crypto-currencies or standard credit card backed currencies. These leaves retain the value of the original purchase but can not be with-drawn or converted back into its original currency by the purchaser once it is in the system. Once the leaves have been transferred to another account in the form of payment or tip will be deposited into the developer / artists "wallet" which then can be converted into the currency of their choice, at this point taxes, fees and other deductions may apply. Though the interface does not yet exist, the current idea is to have a slider to choose the ratio between crypto (STEEM) and fiat the developer receives from each purchase.
Thicket is built on top of OpenSeed, or rather it uses OpenSeed as a bridge between standard non-public databases (off chain data) and STEEM. This allows for non-steem users to be a part of the STEEM economy without the need to be a fully fledged member of the community. It also allows for Thicket to access things like chat, gaming services, among others. Seeds are OpenSeed's "Resource Credit" which is used to do things on the network, and are used within any OpenSeed connected service. Seeds will be used to unlock professional features, skins, increase visibility, etc. In Thicket you gain Seeds by purchasing Leaves and spreading them through out the network by purchasing content. You can also gain a certain number of Seeds for just using the software at a much lower rate.
You can not purchase games or music using Seeds, though you might be able to unlock special skins or items within games but that is up to the developer.
Trees:A thicket for those still wondering, is a very dense stand of trees or other plants. Its smaller than a forest, but often teaming with life as it gives shelter and food to for birds and other animals that hunt and forage in the surrounding fields. In Thicket the software, a Tree is anyone that hosts a ipfs server locally to help "feed and shelter" the rest of the network. By default Developers will be asked to setup IPFS on their machines to join the community this ensures that their games will be available even if they are the only ones serving the files. In the future there will be an option to "purchase" remote Trees for users that don't want the hassle of setting up a local IPFS server. Trees are rewarded Seeds at a much higher rate than other users. Other more monetary gains may be possible, though the how and when are still a ways out.
Sound like something worth investing in? Well check out my proposal on the SPS I'm lucky #13. Which you can find here along with others hoping to fund their projects.
I also have a Pateron Page (if you rather): https://www.patreon.com/vagueentertainment
Thank you in advance for your support.