BitTorrent is a protocol which allows for the efficient, decentralized sharing of huge amounts of information among large groups of small, personal computers. Originally, torrents required a centralized “tracker” to organize specific information dispersal, but that function has been successfully decentralized with the creation of Decentralized Hash Tables.
Why are .torrent files, the references and keys to the BitTorrent parties, distributed with centralized sources like the Pirate Bay? How hard would it be to contain many millions of living .torrent files within a completely decentralized MetaTorrent? Essentially, all you’d need is a very robust client that could sift through many millions of .torrent files referenced from a single .torrent, a MetaTorrent. This means adding a simple filing system and search to the innards of the client, like the one provided externally by Pirate Bay. One magnet link to a MetaTorrent, and the whole project is forever cut loose from big, vulnerable, centralized servers and domains.
Seedbanks are crucial because without them MetaTorrents would be populated with dead .torrents, much like the centralized .torrent sources are now. A Seedbank is just a very robust kind of BitTorrent node with many Terabytes of data to draw from. Whereas the Pirate Bay hosts only references and keys to the torrent party, the .torrents, the Seedbank is all of that as well as a source for the data itself. Instead of torrenting information piecemeal, one might copy an entire Seedbank, a process that would pay off not only with further decentralization, but also with greatly liquefied access to libraries of data.
2 replies on “MetaTorrents and Seedbanks”
torrents are information and information must be set free.
on nov.12 demonoid’s tracker was found to be active in hong kong. as of now however, access to their main page and torrents are not yet up.