Two years ago Diaspora gained a lot of traction with its plan to create an open-source social network that would let users own their data, though to date the service still hasn't actually launched to the public — but that could be changing later this year. In a lengthy feature over at Bloomberg Businessweek, the team revealed that this summer it plans to join the Y-Combinator program — a start-up incubator that has helped launched the likes of Dropbox and Scribd — with the much-awaited public release of the network expected to follow sometime after.
Aside from the vague release timeframe, the team also revealed a few details about just how the network will differentiate itself from the likes of Facebook (aside from the whole own-your-own-data thing), which includes giving users more creative control over their content. Inspired by Instagram, Diaspora will let users customize how they post photos, text, and video, letting them tweak things like font to better reflect their mood and style. Whether it's enough for the network to carve out its own niche remains to be seen, but as Google+ has shown us creating a Facebook competitor is no easy task.