Many readers will be familiar with the name Bit Torrent, yet might be less familiar with the creator of Bit Torrent, Bram Cohen.
We've been lucky enough to grab a few minutes of Bram's time and talk to him on a variety of issues; Bram talks about his views on piracy, the growth in Bit Torrent use, and the protocol's use for software piracy.
Firstly, could you tell us about yourself, your history?
I've been into recreational mathematics most of my life, and worked in software startups for a while after dropping out of college before starting work on BitTorrent.
Tell us about BitTorrent- what was the inspiration? What were you trying to achieve with the protocol?
I had a lot of experience working on networking protocols, and was interested in exploring what I thought were the reasonable problems to work on. My main goal was to make it cheap to distribute large, popular files, which I of course succeeded in doing.
BitTorrent, it was recently suggested, was carrying as much as 30% of the webs traffic; how did you re-act to this news?!
I don't have any visceral concept of how much that bandwidth that really is, so it's mostly just surreal.
Moving onto BitTorrent uses at the moment - it'd be hard to ignore the arguably most common use of the protocol - piracy. How do you feel about this? Did you think about the potential for 'abuse' when you conceived the protocol?
Given the history of such tools, it's fairly obvious that the general public has a strong interest in piracy.
A group have created a new program called eXeem which appears to solve one of the problems BitTorrent has- that off tracking torrents. Have you seen the program, and if so, what do you think of it?
It's yet another napster/kazaa/edonkey/hotline/whatever. BitTorrent usage is doing quite well without it.
Moving on, the protocol has clearly many legitimate uses; have you seen any especially unique implementations?
They're all just pushing around bits, which is about all I care about.
How do you think companies are going to deal with bandwidth in years to come - do you think it will be something along the lines of bit torrent, or something radically different?
Peer to peer as an approach is here to stay.
What's cool technology wise in the Cohen house hold at the moment? What'd be your pick for the "next big thing"?
I've also been working on the Codeville version control system and designing twisty puzzles. I don't know what the next big thing is.
Finally, what does the future hold for yourself?! What are you working on at the moment?
I'm continuing to work on BitTorrent.
Seems mr. Cohen likes short awnsers