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[freehaven-dev] directory services?
Q. How do people get a directory of what's listed in the Free Haven? How is
this directory maintained? Doesn't it need to be secure, distributed, and
anonymous, just like the other documents, so you should put it inside Free
A. A document directory has no business being inside Free Haven:
* The nature of the directory is that it's always changing, whereas the data
in Free Haven is designed to be immutable.
* Free Haven emphasizes storage, not accessibility. A directory is generally
intended to be retrieved frequently. Indeed, if the communications medium we
choose has high latency, retrieving a directory will be a very slow process
We expect that a number of independent directory services will pop up, in
many different jurisdictions. These directories can be updated (via remailers)
by servers as they put new documents into the Haven, either truly anonymously
or signed by a key that a server uses solely for announcing new documents.
(This might develop a sort of economy of trust for how easily a directory
service believes a new submission.)
If a given directory service is shut down, then the others will persist.
Servnet operators can build up their own directory services based on what
shares pass through their system. If servnet operators help to synchronize
and verify shares listed on an external directory service (informing the
service of new shares or incorrect current shares), this may make the service
more stable and useful.
Indeed, even if there are no directory services at all the system will
continue to perform its function: as a reliable mechanism for anonymously
storing data. If only the original publisher of a document knows how to
retrieve it, then the Free Haven it still performing to spec.