I got the opportunity to chat with Bram Cohen, the creator of BitTorrent about his new project to create a model for BitTorrent that works for live streaming video. When you go live there are lots of new complications, said Cohen. Live video is erratic. Packets can shift from good to bad within an instant and you constantly need to monitor and shift away and back from the bad packets to the good ones and back again. This requires constant monitoring and distribution.
How can you do it all while maintaining an acceptable level of latency is Cohen’s main concern. Five to ten seconds is really the delay for broadcast TV so most people will accept that, but once you go over a minute it’s no longer considered a live stream. But if you can bring it under five seconds then you can create some really intriguing live engagement.
Shameless promotion:Enter Yammer’s “Workplace Communications Horror Story!” Sweepstakes for a chance to win a free iPad. Deadline is October 15th, 2010.