I want to see SMOKE have a low barrier to entry when it comes to keeping this network decentralized. This is done in two ways, one having more witnesses and two having more nodes holding the chain data. The latter is a project I plan to start up soon and make running an RPC node as simple as possible so that even people new to running Linux servers have the chance to support the distribution of the chain data.
The former, the Witness Hotbox, is the focus of my SMOKE development at this time. Version one is out and is very easy to convert your existing Witness into the Docker environment. The reason for using Docker is the repeatably and consistency it gives us witnesses. If it works for me, I know with certainty that it will work exactly the same way for you on your Linux server. Any errors I fix will be fixed for you after an update.
This same repeatably benefits new Witnesses that have never run a Linux server or a Witness of any kind. Not only does it allow us all to keep the errors low but it also gives us an opportunity to make the entry into Witnessing super easy! In the current version of the Witness Hotbox, there are a lot of steps to spin up the Witness from scratch. Less than without it but still way too many for the average person.
Where I am Taking the Witness Hotbox:
My goal with the witness Hotbox is to make running a witness as comfortable as possible. In the end, I want a someone new to witnessing to be able to enter their username, and key then forgets the rest. It's an ambitious goal and where will be the need for user input for things like the wallet in the beginning. However, the fewer steps we have a new Witness take to help decentralize this blockchain the better.
Let me know what you think. This topic has been on my mind ever since releasing and seeing how much trouble new users still have even with the Hotbox Docker image. Do you perter an elite group of programmers running the Witnesses or have is open to all users to help increase decentralization?