While I was installing BitTorrent on my Mac, I read the Wikipedia entry for BT and learned that Democracy Now! is available via BT. In fact, they have a pretty nice “how-to” page for BT that covers the basics pretty well.
DN is providing relatively high-quality video of their hour-long daily news program, so these files are pretty big: approximately 400 MiB or about 2/3’s of a full CD-ROM. Between the much larger file size and the larger number of simultaneous downloaders, the performance of the Torrent was much better than my Omni download. I downloaded Friday’s DN! program that afternoon and had about 20 members in the swarm, whereas when I downloaded OmniOutliner I was directly connected to a seed since nobody else was downloading at that time.
I’ll have to try slurping up DN! on Monday morning when it’s fresh. Presumably there will be a larger swarm which should improve performance even further.
I just downloaded this morning’s episode, 418 MiB in 110 minutes, or about 65 kiB/s. There were only a few more members of the swarm (22-24), but performance seemed quite a bit better.