Full Peer

Dave’s looking for a definition for a full peer. I’ve never heard of the term “full peer”, and the qualification about being connected 24 hours doesn’t necessarily fit within a P2P (peer-to-peer) environment.

In P2P, a peer both provides and consumes services. A group of peers can then provide and consume services to and from each other without dependence on any one server. With this understanding, there’s an assumption that this consumption and distribution occurs when the peer is connected.

Within some P2P enabled applications, the communication may be cached or queued when the peer is not connected. I know this the way Groove works.

Within Freenet, any one of the nodes within the network can consume or supply files. But if a peer is not connected, it’s not part of the network, it isn’t a participant and files are consumed and supplied through other participants. Either you’re a peer, or you’re not. Again, the assumption of 24 hour access is not a factor.

Some systems support a hybrid cloud whereby service requests are cached at a remote location (usually hidden from the peer), waiting for the other peer to connect. When the other peer connects, the communication is concluded. The results of the service call can then be communicated back to the originating peer, or cached itself if the originating peer is offline.

In a true P2P system, any one of the peers within the network could act as a cloud (intermediary) for other peers. Within a hybrid system, such as Groove, the system itself might provide these types of intermediary services.

As for firewall issues, most P2P tools can work from within firewalls, or be made to work within firewalls.

Dave, an interesting definition – but I don’t necessarily see it within a truly distributed system. What’s your context for the term? That would help.

More on Zeldman rant

There’s been confusion about why I reacted so strongly to Zeldman’s posting, earlier in the day. Copied from an email I just to a friend:

Zeldman sees only wrong within the Internet. The industry is stupid. Content created without web writers is bad. He seems incapable of seeing the wonder that surrounds him, and that touches him in his everyday interaction.

Case in point – metadata has nothing to do with websites being visited or not. Not really. It’s all about how to generate buzz. We know this from weblogging; it’s all a game. None of us uses meta-data to connect via weblogging. In fact, we’re seeing the beginning instances of a truly semantic web through the human element contained in weblogging — and all Zeldman “sees” is that too many sites aren’t accessible.

I agree with him that web writers aren’t valued as highly as they should; I disagree with the assumption that only web writers can create good content.

It’s elitism and I’ve been fighting this on the internet since day 1. Zeldman is an elitist. If he’s talking about hiring firms, I’m not seeing this from his post. Perhaps the viewpoint is based on our different perspectives of Zeldman.

Red Hat and AOL

At first I thought the reports of Red Hat and AOL in discussions were a joke. However, I found out otherwise.

I like my friend Andy’s view of the possibility at O’Reilly – chances are this is going to be a mix that won’t favor either open source or technical innovation. AOL may be business savvy (and known to be rather ruthless in this respect), but the company is also a technology killer.

John Robb thinks that AOL should package and distribute Radio as an alternative to .NET. John, apples and oranges. Radio ain’t .NET. And remember what I said about AOL being a technology killer. Radio is Userland’s baby – you sure you want to hand it over to the really, really big BigCo Suits? What’s the price of success?

Two monopolies are not better than one. A world with AOL and Microsoft sharing dominion is no better than Microsoft having dominion alone.

Zeldman rant

Zeldman’s on a rant…again

You know according to Zeldman’s estimation of the web, you aren’t here. You’re not reading this. This isn’t usable. None of the web except the infamous Zeldman orange is usable. The web is going to hell – quickly. Better cancel your DSL or cable modem right now. Tell Google it’s failing.

(Found reference at Scripting News)