What is this new social networking protocol named Nostr and how to use it ?

Arindam Basu
5 min readMay 13

… the new free, decentralised, open-source, fun social networking protocol you are probably not using but should …

Nostr is a new decentralised, censor-resistant, free open source fun social networking protocol.

Get started

Step 1. On your browser, and your phone, install a Nostr compatible extension or app (you do not have to have an account yet). If you are on Firefox, try nos2x-fox,
If you are on Chromium class browsers (Google Chrome/Brave/Vivaldi/…), install nos2x or Flamingo

If you are on a mobile, you may want to download damus if you are on iOS (iPhone/iPad) or Amethyst

Step 2. Set up your account, your private and public keys with these apps, and note down your private key to a note taking app or somewhere where you will not forget or can come back to. For example, store it in a secured note, as you will need it. The secure key that starts with nsec1... is the one that works like your password and your public key works like your username.

Step 3. Set up your profile, so for example start with a short description, keywords, etc and choose a username. This is what is called NIP05 format username. For example, mine is arinbasu@nostrplebs.com . It has to be in the format of something like username@site.tld Add a photo if you like.

Step 4. Download and install for browsers the getalby app or if you are on a mobile device, download and install the wallet of satoshi app

Start exploring

Step 5. Get started with a client: All you need is this one id that you set up and you can traverse the Nostr protocol websites. We will focus on web browser here, but the rules are same with mobile apps. On the browser, you can start with any of the several websites, here’s a short list:

iris.to … a simple web interface to traverse the Nostr sites


Arindam Basu

Professor @ University of Canterbury, Doctor, scholar, data scientist, Cantabrian. ENS: arinbasu.eth & mastodon instance: @arin_basu@mastodon.nzoss.nz