Friday, December 22, 2006

BitTorrent

BitTorrent is often seen as nothing more than a tool for stealing copy-protected material. In reality, P2P networking is a powerful tool for moving large files. Warner Brothers and 20th Century Fox have already agreed to use it to distribute content. Now the BBC will also be using BitTorrent. Would it make sense for libraries to offer torrents of our digital files? This is a tool our patrons are using.

1 comment:

max said...

Well if you think that you can get a good number of instances of your data distributed among multiple active users, then yes. BitTorrent is rather worthless when only one or two folks have the file you're looking for. For example, one of the most popular filetypes exchanged on BitTorrent are television shows. Immediately after a television show gets digitized and is announced on a tracker, lots of people will grab the file and soon many copies exist. At this point the download rates are very fast because everyone is receiving small parts of the file from multiple sources and sharing them in the same manner. Then, after a few weeks when people delete the show from their computers, fewer copies of the file exist and downloads slow to a crawl. This is essential to understand if you're thinking of using the BitTorrent protocol. Hope that helps.