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Salon: Did AOL eat Gnutella for lunch?

Mar 16, 2000, 20:25 (2 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Janelle Brown)

"Nullsoft's engineers released a Napster clone without America Online's permission. The media got a peek and then the site was gone...."

"You may recall that Nullsoft, a geeky and talented group of programmers from Arizona who conceived both the Winamp MP3 player and Shoutcast, was purchased last summer by AOL. Justin Frankel, the wunderkind founder of Nullsoft and reticent icon of the geek world, is now estimated by the Wall Street Journal to be worth $70 million. Since the company disappeared behind the iron curtain of AOL, however, the world has heard not a peep about Frankel and company's current projects."

"The mystery appeared solved Tuesday, however, when the quiet alpha release of Gnutella on a back page of the Nullsoft Web site turned into a full-fledged media storm. Gnutella is apparently a type of file-sharing software, inspired by Napster, which allows users to exchange everything from MP3 files to digital movies to "recipes" (as product manager Tom Pepper speculated in the Wall Street Journal). Apparently, the software was intended to resolve some of the bandwidth-hogging issues that have spurred many universities to ban Napster...."

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