Lately I often read about kbin.social being similar to lemmy but more accessible. So I created an account there to check it out. My experience so far is a little mixed. From kbin I can access all Lemmy posts, although I find the interface less intuitive to join new communities. So from the kbin side it feels like an other Lemmy instance.

But when searching for kbin from this Lemmy Account, I do not find much. I feel like I am missing some basic concept, that makes it pretty clear. Why this is such a one way experience.

So now I am wondering: How does this work, what are the difference, what do both sites have in common?

  • ernest
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    9 months ago

    I am striving to make the foundations very similar to Lemmy’s, to facilitate potential migration in either direction. The main differences are that /kbin will ultimately be a modular gateway to the entire fediverse. I will tell you more about it a bit later.

    You can search for groups and users in the following way (this will also be improved):
    https://kbin.social/search?q=%40ernest%40szmer.info
    https://kbin.social/search?q=%40wolnyinternet%40szmer.info

    You can also disable federation in the options (sidebar) and only see local posts.

    • @Kory@lemmy.ml
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      139 months ago

      I really like what you are building there, but at the moment I often cannot find the communities I’m subscribed to on Lemmy so I tend to jump between those two.

    • missingno
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      49 months ago

      I’m intrigued by the idea of being able to talk to other Fediverse apps, but searching for my Pleroma account at @missingno to test this out turns up nothing. Is there some way to force discovery?

    • strepto
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      29 months ago

      Very excited to see how this all turns out. This is my favorite fedi site so far.

    • @YoTcA@feddit.deOP
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      09 months ago

      Thanks for the answer and all the work you put into kbin. Really like the design so far. Only have to get used to the structure a little more.

      Something else I am wondering: when I registered at kbin I think I never could choose an instance. So is it only possible to use kbin with a registration at kbin.social or is a plan to allow other instances of it?

  • ProctorZeuss
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    9 months ago

    From what I’ve found thus far:

    • Community is smaller currently due to being newer but connects to the Lemmy, Mastodon, etc communities so it doesn’t feel small.
    • Definitely needs a mobile app for collapsing comments, notifications, etc but installing on mobile through the browser works quite well.
    • Would like the ability to delete new magazines to change the URL for instance which I currently can’t figure out how to do.
    • Calling communities magazines is a little confusing but nothing serious.
    • The ability to sign up without an email like Lemmy would be a huge bonus.
    • The privacy policy and UI is much nicer than on Lemmy.
    • Signing up is open compared to Lemmy which requires an explanation and review.

    Most of these things will most likely and hopefully come with time as the platform is developed. Other than that I feel this will most likely be my safe haven from the bs Reddit (fuck spez) has pulled.

    • @cujo@sh.itjust.works
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      99 months ago

      Signing up is open compared to Lemmy which requires an explanation and review.

      Only on certain instances. Lemmy.ml and beehaw.org, for example, require you to answer some questions (I’ve heard people say beehaw requires you to write an essay, lol) which I think is primarily to avoid being overrun by bot accounts. Not all instances do, though. sh.itjust.works has open registration, for one.

      • @Torty@beehaw.org
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        9 months ago

        Fwiw my application to BeeHaw I submitted last night was like 4 sentences and approved in < 10 minutes.

        I don’t think they’re looking for anyone’s life story of personal philosophy on life and the universe ya know?

        • @cujo@sh.itjust.works
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          99 months ago

          I have not applied to beehaw, myself. I dislike the lack of a down vote personally. I think it’s a useful utility to have as long as people don’t abuse it… Which people always will, but I don’t think that merits taking it away. That’s the great thing about decentralized services, though!

          • @Derproid@beehaw.org
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            -29 months ago

            Downvotes are used to show disagreement without an explanation which just stifles discussion, and for off-topic comments reporting them works as an alternative.

            I do prefer user moderated conversations through downvotes but with the way they are used I don’t really trust us users enough for that.

            • @cujo@sh.itjust.works
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              79 months ago

              I just don’t necessarily think the feature should be removed just because it isn’t always used as intended. I know there are folks who use it as a “disagree” button, and that’s… fine, I guess lol. I think Lemmy does a decent enough job of preventing abuse of the downvote button by removing the concept of karma. There are no imaginary internet points to be gained or lost. As a bonus, you can always turn vote values off entirely for yourself, as opposed to disabling downvotes on an instance. That way you can upvote/downvote organically, without your perception being skewed by existing votes.

              I wouldn’t necessarily refuse to use a service based solely on whether it has a downvote feature or not, but I think downvote serves a different purpose than reporting. If I were on a platform that didn’t support downvotes, I do think I would feel obliged to be a lot more liberal with my upvotes, lol. Which… maybe that’s not a bad thing. 🤔

              But again, through the power of federation we can both interact on a platform that can satisfy both our beliefs, and that’s a pretty awesome thing.

              • @FaceDeer@lemmy.ml
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                19 months ago

                What might be neat is a user preference that allows one to enable or disable downvoting just for you. If you disable downvoting then you get a different view of the community and comments that only accounts for upvotes.

                • Gollum
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                  19 months ago

                  I guess things like this could also be done just on client side. Kbin and Lemmy definitely need better clients. 😅

    • TooL
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      89 months ago

      Definitely needs a mobile app for collapsing comments, etc but installing on mobile through the browser works quite well.

      Being able to collapse comments is definitely a must have feature for me. Hope we get to see that soon.

  • acedelgado
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    169 months ago

    Kbin is newer, so it has less traffic on its magazines than communities on Lemmy do, at least at the moment. Just like in Lemmy or other fediverse instances, to see kbin magazines someone has had to search for them on your Lemmy instance before they’ll show up on your instance. So more people searching for Lemmy communities in your insurance rather than kbin’s magazines means less will show up on your feed. That’s what they have in common.

    Kbin itself is a different software backend to access the fediverse. It supports viewing/subscibing/posting to Lemmy communities in other fediverse instances, but also has microblogging support (basically like random Twitter posts) that supports mastodon (fediverse Twitter). It also has a lot of customization options if you go into your kbin settings. Plus I read kbin doesn’t rely on Javascript like Lemmy does, so that’s a nice security bonus.

    Kbin is much newer but I like the direction it’s going. They do need to simplify link aggregation to make it a bit easier to view communities, but it’s a work in progress that has a lot of potential.

  • damn
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    159 months ago

    kbin looks good but I can’t get over the fact that its backend is written in PHP. In the long run, lemmy’s Rust backend will probably be way more resource efficient and thus better for hosters. We’ll have to see though, since tech stacks aren’t the most important thing. But for me a Rust backend is a huge plus.

      • damn
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        39 months ago

        I’m sure it’s fine code, I just can’t imagine it’ll ever be as efficient as Rust.

        • @ccunix@lemmy.ml
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          29 months ago

          If it can run on PHP8 you get JIT compilation, which should go a long way to closing any gaps (if they exist, which I suspect not).

        • poVoq
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          29 months ago

          Lemmy is not bottlenecked by anything related to the Rust code and neither is Kbin most likely. Modern php is efficient enough for it to not really matter (contrary to Python or Ruby etc.).

          • @taladar@sh.itjust.works
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            9 months ago

            Modern PHP is better than PHP5 but it still uses that brain dead execution model where every request starts the entire framework from scratch.

    • @YoTcA@feddit.deOP
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      49 months ago

      Yeah, the design of the individual posts in the feed is nice. Are you using kbin on desktop? Because on mobile I only get the random feeds, when I search. And at least so far I find it a little confusing, where the random stuff starts and the search results end. But I think that will get better over time.

      So far I am only using Lemmy, but maybe this is also a nice entry point for the other services.

      What are the differences concerning privacy, you are talking about? Aren’t they using the same Lemmy infrastructure?

        • 0xtero
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          -49 months ago

          Also, Lemmys devs have pretty radical political views and I don’t want to support sites that don’t care about human rights

          • @jadedctrl@sopuli.xyz
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            9 months ago

            Lemmy isn’t a site, it’s a piece of server-software. The software is written by a couple of people with bad political opinions, who also run a popular site using that software, Lemmy.ml.

            You can skip using Lemmy.ml and just use another server using this software. The software itself isn’t magically poisoned or anything!

          • Ko'vari
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            49 months ago

            That seems a rather simple statement to throw out there without backing it up…are we supposed to just repeat information like parrots now? Or is there information out there I haven’t been made aware of?

            • @jadedctrl@sopuli.xyz
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              79 months ago

              From what I understand, one of the core devs (Dessalines) is a Marxist-Lenninist; they later founded the second Lemmy instance, Lemmygrad.ml.

              Recently, there was some discussion on Lemmy.ml’s (the first and official-ish instance) policy of banning any crticisms of China’s government (e.g., even mentioning the Uyghur genocide) on their own servers.

              • Ko'vari
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                39 months ago

                Hmm… I see the points being made. Thanks for supplying actual information. I think it’s a bit too soon to see how this will play out, and people are quite malleable, so this will be interesting to watch develop.

          • @mrmanager@lemmy.today
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            19 months ago

            Whatever country you are in, they don’t actually care about human rights. It’s all driven by greed and power.

  • ANuStart
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    99 months ago

    I’ll admit I can’t wrap my head around how many of this works.

    I like kbin and the default content it provides for the most part… But I want to branch out a bit.

    I know there’s a formula 1 community I want to join on lemmy, do I need to sign up for Lemmy now? And do I need to sign up for multiple “instances” whatever those are?

    I’m pretty tech savvy but the fediverse makes me feel stupid, i have to assume this could be a barrier to entry for some

    • @Devgard@lemmy.world
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      69 months ago

      there should be a way to join Lemmy communities with a Kbin account, but try this

      in the Kbin search bar:

      1. type @REPLACEthisWITHf1COMMUNITY@lemmy.server.here
      2. replace the fields and see if you can subscribe
  • henry
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    69 months ago

    there is a bit of learning curve.

    I found a couple of things :

    • if you go to your preferences, you can get a more famililar reddit look and feel, by adding the top bar, and a few other tweaks.
    • i think that ultimately it wont (shouldn’t) matter what ‘window’ you look through into the fediverse - correct me if i’m wrong. I like kbin a lot, but i’, looking at beehaw. i was asked not to join lemmy.ml because of server load issues.
    • i’m not sure how mastodon fits. i guess that’s a federated app - but is seems entirely seperate.
    • @cnnrduncan@beehaw.org
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      79 months ago

      Mastodon is kinda similar to Lemmy but replaces Twitter rather than Reddit. They both use they same underlying technology though which is why kbin can talk to both!

    • التنينوكس
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      59 months ago

      @henry @YoTcA the way each application handles federation is a bit different. Sure, you have the same content, buy it would be presented differently. Depending on the application goal, the presentation is more tailored to a particular way of interaction and content.

  • MilanA
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    69 months ago

    But when searching for kbin from this Lemmy Account, I do not find much. I feel like I am missing some basic concept, that makes it pretty clear. Why this is such a one way experience.

    Not sure if i understand correctly, but instances can only show you what they are aware of. This does not really depend on the underlaying software (unless it is specialized, like PeerTube maybe).

    • @mrmanager@lemmy.today
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      9 months ago

      Is there a reason why instances couldn’t just index and show all the communities from other federated instances?

      Right now you have to do this to add a community from another instance:

      • Visit it, look in communities, copy the link to the community
      • Go back to the instance you were, paste link into search box and hit enter, then click the link, open sidebar, and click subscribe.

      I don’t see why instances couldn’t just have an index over communities on all federated instances, so it’s a one click action to subscribe to any community in the entire Lemmy fediverse.

      If this was implemented it would lower the bar for new users enormously, and encourage a lot more cross instance subscriptions.

      • acedelgado
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        119 months ago

        Word is Lemmy and kbin are working to make the process more automated, so if you click a link to a community/magazine your instance want aware of it’ll start aggregation without having to manually do the search. Downside of going with a free, open source, decentralized solution is there aren’t a bunch of devs dedicated to updating the platforms for a living, so features will roll out slower.

        • Draconic_NEO
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          19 months ago

          Yeah, Hopefully they’ll be able to something soon. That is ultimately the big downside to decentralized open source solutions but it sure outweighs the drawbacks of the closed source centralized ones as will become painfully apparent on June 12

      • jeena
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        39 months ago

        How would one instance know that I set up a new instance without a central service?

      • Kichae
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        19 months ago

        They can make it so they can request community lists from servers they’re actively connecting to, but because of the decentralized nature of things, servers are not automatically connected to other servers. And I don’t believe a server even needs to be directly connected to another at all to receive posts and comments from users there if they’re routed through a community on a server it is following.

        Spinning up a Fediverse server does not inform any other server that it exists, any more than it informs Etsy that it exists.

  • ch1cken
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    9 months ago

    Couple things i like about kbin over lemmy:

    • Has a good privacy policy, and works without javascript.
    • It integrates federated services like mastodon really nicely, so not only lemmy posts but mastodon, peertube and other services using activitypub will show and any comments sent to them will also show up on the other end
    • I personally think its more intuitive to find new communities, back on lemmy when i was on a less popular instance (tchncs), there was only a couple native communities and they were german, to add more i had to manually find and add them. Whereas on refreshing kbin, i can see a list of random threads/people/posts displayed on the right, alongside other posts on the homepage, which can promote less popular stuff i hadn’t heard of before. Theres also the microblog, and magazines.
    • I find the design a lot nicer overall as well