Is The Internet Dead?
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2019-03-13 07:00 by Karl Denninger
in Technology , 138 references Ignore this thread
Is The Internet Dead?
[Comments enabled]

Well, there's a decent amount of history here and it's worth the read:

In recent years, the great hope of an open and free internet has given way to a dystopia where a few big companies control what we see, how we communicate, and what we can say online.

Today, Berners-Lee thinks the internet is broken. In a 2018 interview with Vanity Fair, he recalled its early days. “The spirit there was very decentralized,” Berners-Lee said. “The individual was incredibly empowered. It was all based on there being no central authority that you had to go to to ask permission. That feeling of individual control, that empowerment, is something we’ve lost.”

Oh really?

Berners-Lee may have Alzheimer's.

Or maybe he was one of the ones in control.

The original Internet protocol designs (TCP and UDP) were indeed DARPA research projects, intended to survive nuclear war.  It's one of the reasons the protocol works so well, although much has changed since then.  But it's rather amusing to hear Berners-Lee talk nostalgic about "no central authority" when MCSNet, and every other commercial network, had to petition for access to the NSFNet for years -- without which you couldn't talk to any university or most government agencies.

Yes, you had to formally ask, and you needed a reason to have the access as well.

There were many attempts to torpedo actual private, for-profit, competitive Internet connectivity.  These included flat-out monopolist practices, blackballing organizations, active and passive interference and more.  There were severe issues between the NAPs and the CIX; the latter of which was a purely-commercial Internet traffic exchange. I literally could spend hours on the outrages that we fought through during those years, many sponsored, countenanced or outright committed by the US Government and its "contractors."

I was there and building networks -- including my own, MCSNet -- during this time.

So what do we have today?

Well, a more-complex set of people with even bigger hammers who do even more-evil things than they did then.

Yeah, we need reform.  We could start with prison terms for those who collude to "de-platform", especially when it extends to common-carrier type services such as DNS, dedicated services and unbranded (that is, "bare server and/or OS") hosting.

I've written about this before in these pages, several times.

But heh, keep up with your fantasy if it makes you happy -- and if it makes the old guys pine for something that never, in reality, existed.

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Mtdm
Posts: 565
Incept: 2009-07-23

NH
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Quote:
The internet would have remained an obscure channel for government and scientists to communicate had it not been for Tim Berners-Lee. In the late 1980s, he created a way for information to be shared easily using hypertext via the World Wide Web.


What a crock of ****. The internet would have done just fine without HTML. In some ways, the web has actually made this issue worse, by creating a highly homogenized platform on which potential monopolies could build themselves. the web was in many ways the beginning of the shift from peer to peer commmunications toward a hub and spoke client:server model only.

And yet the popular masses lap this conflationist drivel up. **** that.
Tickerguy
Posts: 156467
Incept: 2007-06-26
A True American Patriot!
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Yep.

Before HTML there was Gopher. We ran a relatively large Gopher node at the time. Gopher, unlike HTML, was designed for and worked just fine over an ASCII terminal, since that was what existed at the time.

----------
Winding it down.
Twainfan2
Posts: 27
Incept: 2018-12-04

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Have to agree with MTDM. The web set things up for more control by fewer people. Most people think the web and Internet are the same thing because they dont do much beyond googling from their web browser.

As Karl has said many times...enforce the laws ... that would eliminate many of the problems/complaints.
Ckaminski
Posts: 5189
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There are days I miss gopher.

Pure text and information with no bull****.


What I miss is the peer-to-peer nature that existed before NAT.
Tickerguy
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@Ckaminski - Well, NAT isn't actually all that big of a problem in the general sense and can be a pretty-decent security adjunct, making up for a lot of lazy programming sins.

IPv6 basically makes NAT unnecessary. NAT showed up FIRST, however, not due to IP space exhaustion but due to intentional monopolist acts on the allegedly "free" Internet that said dickface in the cited article laments losing; firms like AT&T, for example, had Class "A" address spaces they were NOT forced to relinquish but could NEVER actually utilize while other firms that asked for more space for a "one-to-one" mapping were told to **** off.

That's just ONE of the many outrageous things that used to happen on a REGULAR basis and WAS used by big firms to assrape smaller firms.

----------
Winding it down.

Gianmarko
Posts: 125
Incept: 2013-03-11

Bern, Switzerland
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i never had to use gopher, when the internet infrastructure in Europe started picking up and become useable to the common folk, html was already in place

what Berners-Lee said is obviously nonsense. access of every form is way easier now, however 20 years ago the police didnt have hundreds of cops screening social media, monitoring traffic, and what people say and discuss on various platforms.

recently a guy here got a visit from the blue men at dawn because he posted on farcebook a photoshopped picture of him going over 300kmh on the motorway
Bagbalm
Posts: 5651
Incept: 2009-03-19

Just North of Detroit
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Our local library has a personality conflict over the internet.
They provide access and don't care if you want to view porn, but are horrified the internet ever allowed COMMERCIAL traffic - because business is evil. Yes our local librarians are confused communists. But they can't decide what is commercial.
They are happy to help you search for a job or look up how to start a business, but if you do start a business they don't want anybody to use their computer to order from you. They are happy to show you stuff like Consumer Reports and research how to remodel your kitchen. Just don't ever look at building supply companies to see about actually buying materials. They even object to my checking my Amazon pages to see how my book sales are going because books are wonderful but selling them is evil again. They in many ways have seized the means of production but decided not to use them. If I'm writing a book it is probably a violation of their rules to save my work to DropBox on their network, because it is something I'm going to sell. Yet they buy and sell books and have a gift shop but remain untainted. It makes me dizzy just trying to figure out what they believe.
Mangymutt
Posts: 913
Incept: 2015-05-03

Vancouver WA
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What the **** is this horse ****. I thought Al Gore invented the internet.
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