Over the past few months, I had been digging to find innovative communication protocols that I could use. My intrigue would be lightweight and open protocols that are very accessible. Honestly, it is very difficult to find social networks or communication protocols that are genuinely lightweight. There are XMPP and IRC that are pretty lightweight by design, meant for 1:1 or group chats. There is SSH for remotely accessing a server, for sharing files(using rsync, sftp and scp). Well, that's what I thought until I discovered until I found pico.sh.
Imagine a blogging platform and a photo sharing platform hosted together that is incredibly lightweight. Now that is what the folks at Pico.sh are doing. I genuinely think services such as prose.sh and imgs.sh stand a decent chance to succeed. And they use the time-tested SSH, an open and decentralized protocol and the platforms can be easily self-hosted with minimal resources. While Prose has made my blogging experience a breeze, imgs.sh can potentially replace many rather bloated free and open source photo sharing apps, such as Pixelfed. We are also considering setting up an imgs.sh instance in our tilde.
Another example that I found a few years ago is https://ssh.chat. While I do not use it as actively as I would like, I find its simplicity appealing(incredibly so) even the instance itself is not always active(it does not need to be). The flagship instance does not require SSH keys for clients to join in, but if you are self-hosting this instance and intend to keep it private, you can simply harden this instance by restricting logins to very specific public keys and you should be good to go.
SSH also works pretty well with Tor, so you can setup a tor only instance, although it is going to be quite unpleasant if you are hosting ssh.chat over tor, but prose and imgs instances should do reasonably well.
Now I know I haven't touched upon SSH-Tunnel, which is one of the most commonly known SSH features, but the idea of this post was about SSH's versatility, which I am sure I have made my point now.