[tor-dev] GSoC'16 proposal: the Torprinter project (a Panopticlick-like website)

Georg Koppen gk at torproject.org
Mon Mar 21 15:02:39 UTC 2016

Pierre Laperdrix:


>>> Technical choices
>>> In my opinion, the website must be accessible and modular. It should
>>> have the ability to cope with an important number of connections/data.
>>> With this in mind and the experience gained from developing AmIUnique, I
>>> plan on using the Play framework with a MongoDB database. Developing the
>>> website in Java opens the door to many developers to make the website
>>> better and more robust after its initial launch since it is one of most
>>> used programming language in the world. On the storage and statistics
>>> side, MongoDB is a good fit because it is now a mature technology that
>>> can scale well with an important number of data and connections.
>>> Moreover, the use of SQL databases for AmIUnique proved to be really
>>> powerful but the maintenance after the website was launched became a
>>> tedious task, especially when modifying the underlying model of a
>>> fingerprint to collect new attributes. The choice of a more flexible and
>>> modular database seems a better choice for maintenance and for
>>> adding/removing tests.
>> If we look at the Tor side I guess we have more experience with Python
>> code (which includes me) than Java. Thus, by using Python it might be
>> easier for us to maintain the code in the longer run. That said, I am
>> fine with the decisions as you made them especially if you are already
>> familiar with using all these tools/languages. And, hey, we always
>> encourage students to stay connected to us and get even deeper involved
>> after the GSoC ended. So, this might then actually be an area for you... ;)
> I wrote that I would use Java and Play because I'm familiar with it but
> I'm really open to try something new.
> For the past year, I have mainly used Java and Python so switching to
> Python is absolutely not a problem for me. In terms of timeline, this
> would mean that the website would take a little more time to have a
> proper first version running but if it means in the long-term that a
> more broader part of the Tor community can participate, it is better.
> And for me, learning new technos is part of the fun of development.
> In terms of framework, the new version of Panopticlick is using Flask
> but the Django framework seems to be more complete with a stronger
> community support.

Nice. But as I said it is mainly up to you and I brought these things up
to take these constraints (the maintainablility and the guidelines for
running services on Tor Project infrastructure) into account for
fine-tuning your proposal.



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