I've cooked up a proposal for a generic, "open standard" way for
websites to display links that handoff operations to client-side
applications -- like file-management tools and P2P content-delivery
networks or file-sharing applications.
It involves a new URI scheme called "magnet:".
(URIs, or Uniform/Universal Resource Identifiers, are the more general
class of identifier-like things of which Uniform Resource Names (URNs)
are just one kind.)
In a way, "magnet:" URIs could be thought of as project- and vendor-
neutral versions of the P2P-system-specific URIs that have been
proliferating. (Examples include "ed2k", "freenet", "mnet", "sig2dat",
and probably others.) However, "magnet" URIs are more general and
fuzzy in meaning -- a "magnet:" URI will bring up a list of locally
available options, instead of telling a single program, which
monopolizes the "magnet:" type, an exact action to take.
These URIs could be very useful for activating Gnutella servents,
but would not be Gnutella-only.
For more info, please check out the details and examples at: