The Fediverse, short for Federated Universe, is a vast network of interconnected servers that offer diverse services like microblogging, video publishing, and file hosting. These servers can be independently hosted, providing a decentralized approach to online communication. Recent policy changes by Twitter have led many users to switch to Mastodon, the largest platform in the Fediverse. Mastodon offers a familiar microblogging experience with a twist – ‘Tweets’ are now ‘Toots’.
Also Read: Tokodon – A Mastodon client for Linux
Tuba is an open source GTK4 application which you can use to browse through your Mastodon server and can perform every task which you can do in your Web Browser. It features Keyboard shortcuts which you can use for a faster experience, as well as other cool features which we will discuss here. So, let’s get started!
Tuba offers you the following features:
- You can Search and follow Accounts as well as Hashtags from different servers very easily.
- Different tabs for your feed, notifications and personal messages are available (note that messages on Mastodon are not encrypted, and server admins can see them if they want to, do not share your sensitive information there).
- If someone has tooted a link, then you can see the Link preview in the application itself.
- Bookmarking Toots, Boosting (same as retweeting) and marking toots as favorites are also supported.
- You are also notified when a Toot you boosted has been edited to alter its content.
- Tuba shows a sidebar, through which you can view your bookmarks, as well as browse your local and federated timeline.
- In the settings, you can select the default language in which your Toots will be sent.
- There are many accessibility options in the settings as well, such as the themes, font size etc, which you can set as per your preferences.
Installing Tuba on Linux
Tuba is available in the Flathub repository, and you can install it using the Flatpak command if you have enabled the repository on your system, if you have not enabled Flathub, then you can follow this guide. Once you’re done, just open a Terminal window and type the following commands:
flatpak install flathub dev.geopjr.Tuba
Once installed, you can launch the app from your App Grid/Menu.
Launching Tuba: Your First Steps
On the first launch, you will be asked to enter the name of your server on which you have created your account. If you do not have a Mastodon account yet, then you can choose any server from here and create an account using your e-mail ID. Once your account is created, enter the name of your server in the required filed.
Now, a browser window will open, and you will be asked to log in and authorize the third party application. Just click on the ‘Authorize’ button, in the browser window.
Once authorized, you will be logged into your account in Tuba, and you can access the Fediverse from there.
Exploring Beyond Microblogging: The Fediverse and More
The Fediverse is just not limited to a microblogging platform, you can also use Pixelfed, which poses more as an Image focused social media, more like Instagram. There is also Peertube, which is an alternative to YouTube (although there are very few uploaders when compared to YouTube).
What’s great about the Fediverse is that you do not have to make a new account to sign up to these alternative services. Using your one Mastodon account, you can subscribe to all these services at once. You don’t even have to install separate applications in order to follow someone on Pixelfed, you can do it from Tuba. Although the Interface might be an issue for you, for example, Pixelfed’s application and Website interface is Instagram-like, and any Mastodon client’s interface is more Twitter-like. So, you can access and follow those accounts from the Mastodon client, but it will not be a great experience.