Are "pod" and "storage" the same thing? And should the be?

This question was triggered by this question as well as some other discussions I had in the pas weeks with other people.

My view is that both notions are subtly different and should not be conflated.

“Storage” is the notion that should matter to applications. That’s the place, under my control, where they may store their stuff.

“Pod” is a notion mostly relevant to users. A “pod” is a service package that I get from a pod provider (possibly self-hosted). What exactly is MUST be in this service package is a bit unclear to be. All pod providers I know of provide

  • an identity
  • a storage
  • a webid for that identity, stored in that storage (usually under profile/card#me)

However, my understanding is that identity and storage could (should?) be provided as separate services. Am I wrong? Would a “pod” with only a storage still qualify as a “pod” then?

Similarly, should a pod be limited to only one storage? I may want to segregate my applications into different storages, without the hassle of managing multiple public identities nor multiple accounts at my pod provider(s). Would a “pod” with several storages still qualify as one “pod”?

Bonus question: would a “pod” with only a webid and an LDP inbox still qualify as a pod? I can imagine a few scenarios for this…

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There is no technical definition of a pod - it is not, unfortunately in my opinion, a technical term. In common practice, yes, it refers to a package a pod-provider sells or gives you which typically includes a WebID and a profile document and one or more storage spaces. However, there’s no reason one can’t get the WebID and profile from one provider and a storage space on one or more other providers. A WebID may be associated with no storages (a login only account) or any number of storages located on any number of hosts. There is definitely no requirement that there be only one storage.