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What Is Peer-To-Peer?

Peer-to-peer networking is an approach to computer networking in which all computers share equivalent responsibility for processing data. A peer-to-peer service is a decentralized platform whereby two or more individuals interact directly without intermediation by a third party.

Deeper Definition

Peer-to-Peer, otherwise known as P2P, is the cornerstone of the whole blockchain idea. A Peer-to-Peer network doesn’t have a central point of storing information as servers do. Instead, every participant of a blockchain network can access information and bring modifications to the network, but the rest of the participants will know about it. No autonomous party controls the network; thus, the opportunity for dishonest demeanor is eliminated. Every action on a blockchain is transported forward.

The following are different forms of P2P:

  • Open-source Software: Anybody can view or modify code for the software. Open-source software excludes a software’s central publisher/editor by crowdsourcing software coding, editing, and quality control among writers and users.
  • File-Sharing: File Sharing is where uploaders and downloaders convene to trade media and software files. In addition to peer-to-peer networking, file-sharing services can provide scanning and protection for shared files. They may also offer users the ability to circumvent intellectual property rights anonymously or provide enforcement for intellectual property.
  • Online Marketplaces: Online marketplaces consist of a network for private sellers of goods to find interested buyers. Online marketplaces can offer promotion services for sellers, ratings of buyers and sellers based on history, payment processing, and escrow services.
  • Cryptocurrency and Blockchain: A blockchain is an aspect of cryptocurrency technology. It is a network where users can make payments, process and verify transactions without a central currency issuer or clearinghouse. Blockchain technology allows people to transact business using cryptocurrencies and to make and enforce smart contracts.

Peer-To-Peer Example

BitTorrent is a communication protocol that allows peer-to-peer file sharing. With BitTorrent, users can distribute data and electronic files over the internet in a decentralized manner. One computer can upload any file to the network for other computers to download. Also, every computer on the network can upload parts of a file for a computer to download.

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