Vleeptron Hall of Heroes: Shawn Fanning
Anybody who says you need a team of 120 software development professionals to make a big noise in Cyberspace is ... well ... stoopid. If you get a good idea, and you can program in BASIC, or FORTH, or Logo, or LiSp, you can be the next Shawn Fanning.
If you don't know how to program your computer, well ... I don't know what to say. I'm embarrassed for you. You paid $1000 or $2000 for a box, and you can only use 1 percent of its power and potential.
"Napster" seems to be Fanning's high school nickname for the hair he was always shoving under his baseball cap.
Shawn "Napster" Fanning (born 1980 in Brockton, Massachusetts USA) developed Napster, the first popular peer-to-peer filesharing platform, in 1998.
Motivated by a friend of his who was having difficulties accessing the MP3 files he wanted, Fanning spent months of little sleep writing the code for a program that could provide an easy way to download music. He developed the program while attending Boston's Northeastern University. Later Fanning made the cover of Wired magazine and rose to fame, yet soon after, Napster was the target of several music industry backed lawsuits, which ultimately ended up causing the cessation of the service. Since November 2002, the Napster name and logos have been property of Roxio, Inc.
He also had a cameo, playing himself, in The Italian Job (2003); in the film, Seth Green's character accused Fanning of stealing Napster from him, while he was taking a nap (hence the name.) Also in 2003 Fanning opened a new company SNOCAP with Jordan Mendelson and Ron Conway. It aims to be a legitimate marketplace for digital media.