Quick Update - March the 10th, 2021

Today’s Update

Progress towards the next milestone is moving ahead full steam.

Quick Recap: Hosts are currently testing the P2P Elemental Chat app from a URL that connects directly to their own HoloPort. They are the only ones able to chat. The next infrastructure milestone is where Hosts are hosting Elemental Chat on their HoloPorts for regular web users to be able to use the P2P app via the Holo distributed network.

Last week, We shared a tweet that showed a few folks in our team sending and receiving messages on the hosted Elemental Chat and this time it was rapid – using the signals messaging that gives a real chat experience. We have also recently addressed some resilience work related to web users signing in multiple times as well as automation for the Hosted hApp auto-installation.

Here is what is left to get us ready for full QA & Community/Candidate Testing:

  • Fixes for 2 resilience bugs
  • Deploy updates to the current chat app for Hosts (more details about this soon)
  • Completion of the registration process to ensure a coordinated rollout

Following these, we’ll be doing a variety of automated and scalability testing as well as the human testing in QA and with Pre-Release and Alpha Beta Testers before we launch it out fully into the world.

Finally, the Holochain team has also been working on enhancements to proxy services which will make the scaling needed for the next milestone possible. Although the original version of the proxy was able to orchestrate hundreds of thousands of interactions per second, the memory and thread pool resources required to do so were much higher than we wanted them to be, and we discovered some parts of our back pressure weren’t working properly so that just having a few high latency nodes connected was causing slow-downs for everyone. To achieve the back pressure we were looking for we had to retool the proxy on a pretty low-level, while benchmarking results each step of the way. We now have a faster and lighter version that we’re still in the process of testing and debugging, but it has succeeded in proxying connections for our end-to-end tests.

In the future Holochain will support many ways of connecting with peers, but during this Alpha test period for Holo and even beyond, proxy services ensure a 100% reliability for connections. We will add more solutions in the form of optimisations that work to remove the proxy/middleman in the future, but that will not be during the Alpha test.