Matrix aims to be a secure but simple standard featuring end-to-end encrypted (E2EE)1 messaging, Voice over IP (VoIP), Video calls and bridging to other communication protocols while providing decentralization and preserving privacy. This can be done by self-hosting a federated2 homeserver like Synapse. To connect with me, register at another public server and join my Matrix room found at the about page.

Matrix logo

Basic concepts

The Matrix Specification defines the parts of the protocol and is rather overwhelming for new users. For this reason some of the main characteristics are condensed in the following.

User ID

In Matrix, a user ID begins with an at (@) character followed by the username and domain name, which are separated by a colon (:). For example:


The same way IRC3 is organised Matrix uses the concept of public rooms to represent conversations. Rooms have a random unique identifier that is set at creation time and can be referred to using an alias. To distinguish room aliases from users at a matrix server rooms are identified by a hashtag (#) instead of an @ character leading to the following syntax for a room alias:

There’s a web service at provided by the Foundation for linking users, rooms and messages, which can ease onboarding. Additionally, lists rooms that can be joined without invitation and provides information such as member count and topic. Following their links displays a history of messages in this room.


  1. End-to-end encryption in the Wikipedia ↩︎

  2. Federation in the Wikipedia ↩︎

  3. Internet Relay Chat (IRC) in the Wikipedia ↩︎

Last updated on