Talk about agile development.

Flutter + TreeHacks + The @protocol
Flutter + TreeHacks + The @protocol

Coming up with a promising app idea, tackling a brand new stack/technology, and delivering a pitch within 48 hours is no small feat. That’s why we were so impressed with the entries we received for our API challenge at Stanford’s TreeHacks 2021. A weekend-long hackathon, TreeHacks took place on February 12–14 and was themed Hacking For the Future: addressing deeply impactful problems and building creative, unique solutions.

During the weekend, we posed our own challenge to students by asking them to develop a simple mobile application using Flutter and the @protocol. Built using Dart, the @protocol…


Written by Jory Des Jardins

Older man sitting in subway station with sign that reads “Seeking Human Kindness”
Older man sitting in subway station with sign that reads “Seeking Human Kindness”

A couple of years ago I had a neighbor who’d scored a big job at an ascendant tech company. This company had captured my admiration for its underdog mentality, constant innovation, and willingness to publicly declare when it got something wrong and then fix it. I recall commenting to my neighbor, for example, how impressed I was with the company’s policy toward enforcing gender pay equity after an internal team had discovered a compensation discrepancy between male and female executives.

I was saddened to hear when, four months into the role, my neighbor shared with…


Interview by Tyler McNierney

Header for The hidden beauty of @protocol namespaces
Header for The hidden beauty of @protocol namespaces

Introduction

At the surface level, the @protocol appears to be a simple, robust software development infrastructure that magically provides a backend service for apps that are built on top of it. Beyond the list of verbs (e.g. put, getKeys), its monitoring service, and libraries that provide @protocol functionalities, The @ Company’s Internet protocol at its highest abstraction layer doesn’t really reveal too much to the software developer (and rightly so to make their programming lives easier!). Diving deeper into the @protocol, you will soon realize that there is a lot at play, from various rounds of data…


By Muralidharan Padmanaban, Naresh Gurijala and Intiser Ahmed

Header for The @protocol synchronization
Header for The @protocol synchronization

What is synchronization?

In the @protocol world, your personal data is encrypted with your own private key and stored on your mobile device. Periodically, this data is copied securely over to a dedicated cloud server which only you can decrypt and read since you have sole access to your private key. Nobody else, including The @ Company can read your data. The process of maintaining identical copies of this data on the server and your mobile devices is known as synchronization.

Commit Log

Commit logs play a crucial role in the @protocol synchronization process. When you perform…


Hand holding phone with google.com displayed on the screen
Hand holding phone with google.com displayed on the screen

On August 5, 2020, I received an email from Google that began: “You are not being sued.”

Having no recollection of any past misdemeanors, I was understandably alarmed by this cryptic message. But as I read on, I realized that not only was I not being sued, I was, technically, a victim.

“You have received this notice because Google’s records indicated that you may be a Settlement Class Member, and you may be eligible to receive a payment from the Settlement,” the email said. Google went on to inform me that due to various software bugs between 2015 and 2018…


Written by Jory Des Jardins, CMO of The @ Company

A case study for parents, marketers, and anyone who thinks they understand gaming apps for kids.

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The note came from a parent in my daughter’s 4th grade class: The holidays were approaching, she noted, and her daughter-like presumably most of her classmates in lockdown-mandated Northern California-would be holed up over winter break with not much face-to-face interaction. Would any of our kids care to join her daughter on Roblox?

Accepting this offer seemed to me a no-brainer. I was already familiar with the gaming platform known for having fun, kid-appropriate experiences with characters that resembled Lego characters, but gummier. Since early March of 2020 my kids’…


We believe in a better Internet.

Diverse group of brightly-colored people crowd together, some stretching, taking selfies, biking, etc.
Diverse group of brightly-colored people crowd together, some stretching, taking selfies, biking, etc.

We love the Internet. And we know it’s not perfect.

As Internet citizens, we’re faced with an impossible choice: opt into giving away the right to own our data (thus making us vulnerable to data breaches or online surveillance) or opt out of using online services entirely.

This take-it-or-leave-it model is limiting and frankly insulting. It ignores our humanity and simplifies us into patterns of behavior to be analyzed. We’ve grown accustomed to constantly looking over our shoulders, paranoid that someone or some bot might be eavesdropping on our online activity.

Worse, those with nefarious intentions have tainted the Internet…


By Tyler Trott, Muralidharan Padmanaban, Sitaram Kalluri

Context: The @protocol supports end-to-end encryption for all the data handled through it. This is difficult to do, especially for information that is shared with a large number of people and very frequently, so we had to come up with a clever mechanism to make the technology work. In this document, we will discuss the details behind how we went about accomplishing data encryption on the @protocol.

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End-to-End Encryption on the @protocol

Combinations of both Asymmetric Key Encryption and Symmetric Key Encryption is a common practice for information security. Asymmetric Key Encryption is used to exchange keys (commonly…


In a Post-Insurrectionist Pandemic, does the customer need software, two-day shipping, or followers? Maybe. Or perhaps they need humanity most.

Written by Jory Des Jardins, CMO at The @ Company.

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Illustration by Clark William Miller

Thanks to Clark Miller for the rather brilliant illustration, rendered with not a whole lot of direction other than: Make it about the Internet, and make it optimistic….

Ten years ago, I became a fan of the sci-fi TV show Fringe.

The @ Company

Now for some internet optimism

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