I've been thinking a lot about how we could make federated social networks more accessible for people who:
- Don't want to learn how to set up hosting or use the terminal.
- Have a limited knowledge of instances, federation, and all the technical workings of the Fediverse.
- Want an online space for their community which isn't Facebook.
I know you mentioned it's something your team's been considering a lot as well.
I wanted to wireframe a Bonfire setup process which doesn't require any technical knowledge. No finding a hosting provider, and no using a terminal. I also wanted to experiment with concepts which users would be familiar with from other digital products, like "trial" and "upgrade," by offering hosting as a service which can be bought and managed within Bonfire.
My idea is that users can set up a test instance on a Bonfire-hosted server as a "free trial," with a limit on the resources which this instance can use. Once they have tried out Bonfire's features and customised their instance to suit their needs, they can then pay for a hosting plan with a partner company. Their instance's data is then transferred from the Bonfire-hosted server to the partner company's server, and any appropriate DNS records are set up automatically (either for the subdomain.bonfire.cafe address, or for their own custom domain).
Here's my prototype:
What do you think of the idea?