Thoughts on open source and bitTorrent
You know what’s awesome? Open source software. The transparency (you can see and edit almost anything to your liking), the camaraderie (projects like GitHub encourage social coding and group activity), and the power of it are what propels the internet today. Even operating systems like Ubuntu are open source and giving closed source operating systems a run for their money.
You know what else is awesome? BitTorrent. Specifically, its file type called a torrent. Yes, they have gotten an extremely bad rap for piracy issues, as you know. However, just because a tool is used for evil, doesn’t make it evil. Torrents are one of the most brilliant internet-centric inventions of the last two decades. It has made large file downloading nearly painless.
Torrents work by dividing the target file into small information chunks, found on an unlimited number of different hosts. Through this method, torrents are able to download large files quickly. When a client (the recipient of a target file) has initiated a torrent download, the chunks of target file that are needed can be found easily, based on the data from the torrent itself. Once all the chunks are downloaded the client can assemble them into a usable form.
I’m currently attending IUPUI in Indianapolis. We get a TON of expensive software for free, so I shouldn’t complain about things, but I will anyway. IUPUI gives us this large-sized software and then breaks the software into 500MB chunks which are very inconvenient to download. Part of the beauty of BitTorrent’s system is that you are getting very small chunks of data from a lot of people that have what you need. This allows you to pause and resume at any time, and most times, without a hitch. But what does Data Cave use torrents for?
We are open source enthusiasts as you know. We use Ubuntu servers fairly heavily. So when a new distribution comes out, we like to give back to the community and allow uploads of the latest Ubuntu/Kubuntu operating systems.
We let the uploads run with Transmission, an open source BitTorrent client, and generally keep them going for quite awhile after the initial distro launch. This makes us feel warm and fuzzy. Our employees also have their hands in other open source projects. For a taste, here is Caleb’s github page as well as DatatCave’s page. They contain both professional and personal projects. We’ll talk more about the professional ones later.
What open source software do you love? We want your feedback! Let us know in the comments.
Data Cave is a privately owned and operated Tier IV data center located in Columbus, Indiana convenient to Indianapolis, Louisville and Cincinnati. Please contact us for more information at 866-514-2283.