The Blocks Extensible Exchange Protocol: Internet Peer-to-Peer Application Infrastructure
Darren New, Senior Technical Staff, Invisible Worlds, Inc.
Many new Internet protocols solve the same problems over and over, such as negotiating encryption, logging in users, separating each request from the next, matching responses to requests, reporting errors, and so on. At the same time, administrative problems such as network address translation, firewalls, and dynamic IP address assignment are make it progressively harder to make sure multiple requests are going to the same machine.
The BEEP (Blocks Extensible Exchange Protocol, aka: BXXP) framework specifies a reusable solution to these problems, instead of requiring the same decisions to be made over again for each new application. BEEP incorporates the knowledge and experience of leading Internet protocol architects into a framework that connects existing Internet standards for encryption and authentication and new standards for connection management. A new networked application needs merely to supply the "important" part, the part that distinguishes it from other applications, as a BEEP "profile." The mundane part is the same for all protocols, and therefore can be coded as a library, freeing the application designer to focus on the interesting bits.
This talk will introduce the BEEP framework, now being standardized by the IETF, and how it can be used to build peer-to-peer applications quickly. It will also briefly touch on the IMXP (Instant Messaging Exchange Protocol) framework, a peer-to-peer application messaging platform implemented using the BEEP framework.