jesta witness update - march through may

I have been slacking on witness updates lately, it's been a busy couple months. I figured I'd take a few minutes this morning to provide an update across all of the various projects I'm running related to Steem.

1. Recent Updates

  • chainBB is making some great progress and is consuming the bulk of my efforts right now. The beta forums themselves have been getting regular updates and a decent flow of users. I am now exclusively using chainBB in an attempt to dog-food the product and make it as functional as possile.
  • I released a GUI Desktop Wallet I've named Vessel. It's completely free to use and works across all OSes, and recently upgraded it to support Steem Power Delegation.
  • has seen some updates over the last few months and I haven't really summarized them yet. There's a new homepage, a few new pages in the Labs section, a few new APIs, and a number of new services which are recording data that's not published yet.
  • I launched a basic mirror of steemdb for and plan on helping with Peerplays when I have the time. I really like what Peerplays is doing and how they're positioning themselves.

2. Upcoming Goals

  • chainBB right now is taking up the bulk of my focus and there's a number of improvements coming. I am also in the middle of planning out a more long term future for the platform, working on a website to explain where it's heading, and looking to turn this into a viable business model. Having a platform specifically designed to enhance engagement on the Steem blockchain I believe is one of the strongest values it brings, right along with a very familiar forum feel.
  • With Vessel, I've got a number of things I hope to add soon: transaction history, witness voting, locale support for multiple languages, savings account functionality, and a setup for trusted account creation. I'm building out a custom API (sort of like steemdb uses) to accompish the transaction history and it's going to take some time. Vessel itself is on the back burner at the moment while the chainBB planning moves ahead. An integration between Vessel and chainBB is coming as well, but will likely take some time.
  • I'm working on a platform-centric leaderboard on, the goal is to have a place to see how well the 3rd party platforms (eSteem, busy, chainBB) are doing in terms of adoption and rewards. It's a lot of data and I plan to clean up the UI a lot more and add some charts.

3. Witness Musings

Well, I'm finally moved and settled, and back in the saddle as far as development goes. It's been a good couple months working on chainBB and Vessel. I think what's coming out of these two projects will lead to a new decentralized way to interact with the Steem blockchain. It's pretty exciting stuff!

The ecosystem I'm looking to create right now consists of three parts:

  • The Vessel Desktop Wallet (for account + funds management)
  • The chainBB Discussion Forum Platform (for posting + voting)
  • The Steem Blockchain (for storage)

This design separates out the portion of your Steem experience that needs to be guarded - your funds. chainBB itself won't ever allow you to manage your account or your funds, especially as the platform grows and more forums come online. You shouldn't have to trust these content platforms with that. The only thing you should ever consider using on a website is your posting key (or steemconnect) to participate, and when I'm done, you might not even need to do that :)

The integration between these 3 projects just feels right and the model itself, while more complex than a single solution, is how I prefer to use the blockchain. It's not a mass adoption solution, but I'm ok with that, and I feel many others will be too. This setup will end up being more for the technically inclined and the power users, a group I feel that has been neglected for far too long while mass adoption is chased.

Finally, don't forget to vote for witnesses here.

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