Tribler - Decentralized Bit Torrents with a Social Dimension
Michel just pointed me to an article in Torrent Freak which describes Tribler, a new bit torrent client that introduces some interesting new features to further decentralize the sharing of files.
The Torrent Freak article
Truly Decentralized BitTorrent Downloading Has Finally Arrived
describes what sets Tribler apart from other bit torrent clients.
The two most important features Tribler introduces are a direct P2P search function and a reputation system that its creators say will act as an effective spam filter.
P2P search makes the application a true P2P application that no longer depends on either external search engines or on specialized sites that collect and track torrents.
The reputation system ensures that what is appreciated will "float to the top", meaning it will be more visible in searches, and that those who contribute well will have an easier time finding others willing to help with their downloads. Each Tribler user has their own "Channel", which contains the files they share. New channels are automatically - if somewhat slowly - discovered. Channels are marked as spam or as favorite, so the better ones will gain more visibility.
What tribler is sorely missing - so far - is an adequate user base. If you are passionate about P2P and sharing, here is where you can lend a hand ... download the application and start using it.
Tribler - Windows and Mac version available, Ubuntu Linux in progress
You can use tribler in addition to any other bit torrent client you may already have running.
It's an experiment, it's fun and it will greatly advance our knowledge about the direct sharing of information and media.
It is another step on the way towards a truly independent, user-driven internet.
For those interested in the philosophy behind Tribler, here is a paper:
TRIBLER: a social-based peer-to-peer system