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   Re: what Napster means for XML

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  • From: David Megginson <david@megginson.com>
  • To: XML-Dev List <xml-dev@xml.org>
  • Date: 25 Apr 2000 08:55:34 -0400

Tim Bray <tbray@textuality.com> writes:

> At 12:12 PM 4/24/00 -0400, Simon St.Laurent wrote:
> >It doesn't mention XML at all, but these are in many ways the models I'd
> >like to see for information exchange using XML, rather than the data
> >center/hub-spoke kinds of models that companies seem to be fixated on.
> All this is totally orthogonal to whether you use XML or not.  The real
> point is this: what does it mean when every desktop is a web server as 
> well as a web client?  And [a problem that becomes obvious after a brief
> look at Gnutella] what degree of intermediation is necessary to make this
> scale?  -T.

Further to Tim's point, Napster is a special case because there's an
extremely high degree of redundancy: even a moderately popular song
will show up on dozens or hundreds of computers at once.  Since most
of the time many people are chasing relatively few (say, a few
thousand) songs, it doesn't much matter who you get the song from.
Note that there are still central servers to help you *find* the song
you want.

For general information exchange, this model would not work so well.
What if SAX were available only when I happened to have my notebook
plugged into my cable modem?

All the best,


David Megginson                 david@megginson.com

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