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Posted on March 13, 2005 12:06 AM in Computers
Warning: This blog entry was written two or more years ago. Therefore, it may contain broken links, out-dated or misleading content, or information that is just plain wrong. Please read on with caution.

In my mind, anything you learned to do from Bert and Ernie can't be bad. Back when I was still wearing velcro shoes, they tought me the benefits of sharing. Little did I know that one day sharing would become such a big deal.

Two years ago I used Kazaa Lite for all my online sharing needs. When that application kind of fell by the wayside, I was lucky enough to hear about another sharing program called WinMX. That particular sharing application lasted me quite a long time. In fact, I have been using it (for personal research purposes only, of course) up until a few weeks ago. At that time, I noticed that it became increasingly more difficult to find music, and even when music was found, it would come in so many different bitrates and lengths that downloading the correct version became a complete nuissance.

Giving up on WinMX for the time being, I decided to give eDonkey 2000 a try. It didn't quite have the UI features that I liked in the aforementioned applications, but it seemed to do a fairly good job of finding and downloading music. The program's BitTorrent support seemed like an intriguing feature, but it proved to be less than stellar at best (I continue to use ABC for all of my BitTorrent needs). It wasn't long, however, before I realized that even eDonkey2000 was having problems finding and downloading the more obscure music that I frequently search for.

Out of desperation, I began looking at applications like Morpheus and BearShare, only to find that they both "include adware that may record your surfing habits, deliver advertisements, collect private information, or modify your system settings." Riiiiight.

So while trying to get my hands on a copy of the recently leaked "The Line Begins to Blur" by Nine Inch Nails, I ran across several random references to a program referred to simply as "slsk." A quick Google search for slsk led me to Soulseek, a file sharing application free of all the cruft found in the two previously mentioned apps that has a user interface I can appreciate.

I haven't had a chance to use it all that much yet, but I like what I have seen thus far. I'm not sure if BitTorrent support is built-in (my guess is no), but that is okay because for the time being I am perfectly happy with downloading torrents separately using ABC. In fact, it was via BitTorrent – not file sharing apps – that I was able to find both the new NIN song and the recently released Star Wars Episode III Trailer (thanks to Kottke) tonight.

Remember, sharing is a good thing. If anyone tries to stop you along the way, just tell 'em Bert and Ernie sent ya. That'll work, right? ;)


Ryan on March 13, 2005 at 1:22 AM:

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