[RC5] distributed.everything

Ryan Schmidt berrytech at bigfoot.com
Mon Jun 29 22:52:37 EDT 1998

>  As I write this I'm currently downloading 32 MB of demo software.  I can't
>browse the internet, as the downloading is hogging all of my bandwidth.  I
>also can't browse because netscape will sometimes crash will browsing and
>downloading.  And as I sit here looking at the "three hours left," I'm
>thinking, "wouldn't it be great if someone did for our modems what
>distributed.net has done for our cpu."

Distributed.net hasn't done anything for our CPUs. They're still operating at
the same speed they were before; they're just working on different parts of the
same project, effectively giving us a very fast computer. Just as if you put a
couple thousand modems, they could download your 32 MBs of stuff pretty quickly.

>  What if someone wrote a program that would download large files in the
>background, letting the web browser grab its data when it needed to?  Want to
>download all those nice demos?  Just copy the url into the program.  Whenever
>you're not using your modem, such as when you're reading this email, the
>program would download the large files.  Once a file was finished, it would be
>stored into a certain directory and the next file would be started.  No longer
>would our bandwidth go to waste.

Well, I'm reading e-mail right now, while at the same time Internet Explorer is
downloading an 8 MB file (which, let me tell you, takes a really long time at
14.4 kbps). I can also still look at web pages, although it does take ten
minutes for a page to show up due to the concurrent download. I agree it would
be nice if there could be a way to put a priority on a particular download, so
that HTML pages would load first, then GIF and JPG graphics, followed by any
other files being downloaded separately.

>  Now, since we all love d.net and the program I'm talking about is really a
>d.modem, the two could be bundled together.  There was talk of putting a d.net
>client into other software, and this would be a nice place to start.  If this
>program has already been written or can't be written, please let me know.  If
>not, who wants to write it?  It shouldn't be difficult at all for the
>programmers participating in d.net :)

The issue of putting the cracking client into other software has been discussed
before on this list, and I believe it was generally decided that this is a *bad*
idea. We want people to install this client because they want to help us prove
the need for better encryption, not because they want some other incidental
feature. This also adds complexity and extra opportunity for error into the
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