Minds Launches the Beta of Its Discord-like Chat Platform


Introduction

In my "Minds Takes One Step Forward, Two Steps Back" editorial, I briefly talked about how the social media platform would launch a beta of Minds Chat. The features would include end-to-end encryption, file sharing, video chat, rooms, and federations. Basically, it is almost an open-source version of Discord.

Today, the Minds Chat beta has officially launched and I was able to give it try on both my Windows laptop and Linux Mint desktop.

Starting Off

On the left hand side of your dashboard, "Chat" can be found between "Wallet" and "Analytics". You need to have the Canary version enabled.


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When you enter Minds Chat for the very first time, you will be asked to make a pass phrase. Once you make one, you will also be given a security key. Either download the .txt file or write it down on a notebook and keep it safe. It's not the end of the world if you forget your pass phrase or security key, but you will lose access to your past messages.

After that, whenever you log back in, you will be prompted with this message. You can use either your pass phrase or security key.


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This will be the first thing you see:


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Some Key Features

The initial announcement of Minds Chat didn't exactly elaborate on what it was running on. Under the Minds Canary room, Jack confirmed that it runs on Matrix which is a fork of Element.


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On the home screen, you can send a DM to an individual, search for public rooms, or create your own room. You can also do this by clicking on the plus signs on the left taskbar. When you create your own room, you have the option to make it public or private. End-to-end encryption is optional for public rooms and mandatory for private rooms.


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Type in the search bar to find the person you want to DM. You can also click on a person's avatar in a room and click "Direct message".

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Once you find a room that interests you, you can join and discuss with others.

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Options for creating your own room.


After you join or have created a room, you can click on the "i" icon on the upper right corner to check the room's information. This includes who is online, what files have been shared, the option to share the room, and the room's settings. Under "Room Settings", if you are the admin, you can adjust who can access the room, assign roles and permissions, and many other things.


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The information tag of the Minds Canary room.


Underneath "Room Settings", if you are the admin, you can also add widgets. Some widgets that are currently available include YouTube, EtherCalc, Google Calendar, and more. However, the widget that may interest you the most would be Jitsi, an open-source video conference app that allows users to video chat.


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The current list of widgets available to integrate to your own room.

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MindsGaming is an example of a room that has Jitsi integrated for video chat.


Minds's Plan Going Forward

In the Minds Canary room, a user asked the team when will there be a full rollout. Jack responded that in the best case scenario, Minds Chat will fully launch by late next week. As the beta is only at its infancy, the team needs more people to log into Minds Chat in order to stress test.


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If you are wondering if there will be a mobile app of Chat coming soon, Bill Ottman has confirmed that the app will arrive sometime next week. Trust me, you do not want to try Minds Chat on a mobile browser.


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Closing Thoughts

As the beta just began today, I cannot give my complete impressions as I've only scratched the surface. However, I like the aesthetics (under dark mode) and the messaging system is responsive. The Minds Canary room is already getting a little bit hectic, but nothing has crashed yet which bodes well for the platform's stability. It will take a while for me to try out all the available features, but initial impressions are very good.

If the prospects of an open-source version of Discord greatly interest you, opt into Minds Canary to help the team stress test Chat (referral link).

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LateToTheParty
LateToTheParty

Agnostic classical liberal & fiscal conservative who likes anime, JRPGs, and Linux. Follow me on Minds: https://www.minds.com/LateToTheParty Follow me on Pocketnet: https://pocketnet.app/latetotheparty?ref=PPCGPRioSHzkgKZstjCWhwGfWtxYUM2DSb


Late to the Party, the Blog
Late to the Party, the Blog

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