Blog Urbit Community Update - January 2022

Jeremy Tunnell at

It’s a new year and the network is full of optimistic energy. Organizations around the Urbit Universe are shipping software, making plans, and hanging out. Here’s the latest:

0 - The Urbit Foundation is live

As was mentioned in the last update, the UF is now up and running on its own. In addition to taking this newsletter (back) over, we’re focused on three broad areas:

- Developer experience: improving learning pathways and developer tooling

- Grants: distributing address space to those that build

- The Combine: helping new and existing organizations be successful on Urbit

We’re trying a thing out where we make our goals and plans public, so if you want to know what the UF is up to, check them out here:

1 - Meetup in Austin

Distribution Hall in Austin, TX is still where the party is at — this one is tomorrow, January 21st. All the cool kids, including our own ~poldec-tonteg, will be there. If you’re in Austin, you should definitely go. For more details check out the meetup page:

2 - L2 Update

In dogfooding L2, the team realized that freshly-booted L2 ships sometimes cannot speak to the entire network because of a %keys mismatch between L1 and L2 ships. This means DMs, chat messages, and `|hi` requests can go unseen and unanswered.

An OTA remedying this issue went out Tuesday, January 18th. Barring any additional bugs, L2 will be ready for the first stage of our incremental rollout to community members ahead of the public release.

If you want to keep up with progress, more information is here:

- (fix %keys)

- (applies the fix retroactively)

Tuesday’s OTA caused a few problems — sorry about that. The upside is that it’s spurred us to get better about how we communicate OTAs to the community:

3 - New Gall Guide

One of the most popular pieces of educational material we’ve had was ~timluc-miptev’s “Complete Guide to Gall and Landscape apps,” but it fell out of date with the arrival of software distribution. Thankfully, ~tinnus-napbus finished a thorough rewrite last month that’s now live on the website.

Gall is the part of Urbit that’s responsible for managing applications. If you’re looking to build an Urbit app, you’ll definitely want to check this out:

4 - Studio

Tirrel released Studio a little while back, which is a suite of tools for making money with your Urbit ship. Currently it lets you publish and host webpages from Landscape notebook posts, broadcast them to a mailing list via a Sendgrid integration, and enables subscription payments to monetize content by applying at Soon, Studio will even turn your Urbit into a planet sales storefront.

Get it now at ~tirrel/studio.

5 - Urbit Visor redesign and roadmap

dcSpark recently finished a complete redesign of Urbit Visor (, as well as a mechanism for authenticating with Urbit ID, and several smaller projects including hoon libraries and a simple chatbot ( Here’s an update from the crew behind Urbit Visor:

“2022 is only just getting started and we already have a lot of exciting releases just around the corner. The one that we’re most excited about is Twitter UV, a chrome extension which allows users to seamlessly share and unroll content from Twitter to Urbit groups at the click of a button. We’re also working on detailed guides that teach new devs how to build full fledged Urbit Web Apps and Urbit Visor Extensions with zero background knowledge of the Urbit stack. This year will see the birth of the UV ecosystem — we look forward to seeing what the developer community will accomplish.”

6 - Uqbar, an L1 blockchain

On Sept 5th first notes on possible Uqbar architecture were circulated by ~datwet and ~rinseg-raplen. Four days later the Uqbar founding team was assembled. Over the next two months specs were completed, development work began, and the seed raise was completed by Thanksgiving 2021. As of December, the dev team estimates that what would have taken six months on any other stack took only six weeks on Urbit.

To say that the team is moving fast would be an understatement. To learn more, join the community on ~hocwyn-tipwex/uqbar-event-horizon.

6 - Odds & Ends

The Dalten Collective released %orca, which allows groups to share channels (!). Check it out here:

The Urbit Foundation’s grant proposal process has changed. If you want to earn some address space, read up on how to submit a proposal here:

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