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31 March 2006


One of the best uses of the Internet is the ability to download copyrighted stuff - sorry DMCA, but that's the truth. Can you imagine the Internet without being able to download Movies, MP3s, Softwaes , etc. I don't think so.
There are currently many ways to download such stuff, one of the most popular means it P2P where each one can share some files from his own Disk. People simply download some softwares like Kazaa, Shareaza, BitTorrent, etc and they can then download files from others, and for sure upload files to them as well. The problem with P2P is availability, the point is you can find a file with someone, but these are zillions of people downloading the file from him. So you have to be put in a queue since that user has limited resources and cannot just send it to everyone at the same time. You may wait for ages in the queue, and this user may go offline just before you finish downloading the file you want.
One other method of sharing stuff is by uploading them to sites like RapidShare, YouSendIt, you name them. And people can go there and download the files. The problem with such sites, that you cannot simply search there to find the file you want. What happens there is the the file uploader send a link to his file there to some Web Forum or Mailing List, which are normally limited to few users only.
So, where there is no Hybrid-Solution that can have the pros. of each of the above mothods. Imagine a method having the Searching capabilities of P2P, and the reliable resources of Web Servers. What I am thinking of is a P2P that shares URLs instead of files. So people just upload their files to RapidShare, and then post the URL to a P2P network, this may be an ordinary P2P like Gnutella or Fast Track, or some new P2P networkd with its own programs that are optimized to URL sharing. Users can also tag files with some tags like "Unavailable", "Fake", "High Quality", "Low Quality", etc. They can even tag it with it's genre, artists names, etc. just to improve the searching there. Also users are not supposed to be limited to RapidShare, et al. but they can use their own FTP servers or anything equivalent. However using Free file sharing servers keep them away from piracy laws.
Finally, this article is for educational reasons only, and I really ask you not to break your country's laws. Actually I think this solution must be used to share non copyrighted stuff only, as you can buy copyrighted CD from stores.

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