Sunday, October 28, 2007

Internet Can't Keep Up with Demand for Bandwidth

There's nothing really notable in this story. It's interesting merely because they speak to the people who created the Internet, and Al Gore's name doesn't even come up:

Some warn that this rush will overwhelm service providers if they don't prepare for it. And the forecast for an ever-rising flood of data has some asking, is the Internet outdated?

"That's one way to put it," says Larry Roberts, who, in 1969, managed the Pentagon's APRAnet, the precursor to the Internet. "Another is that it's insufficient for the new kinds and new scale of today's transfers."

While some disagree with Roberts's characterization, the connection speeds reaching American homes are certainly behind those enjoyed by Japan, South Korea, and Sweden and could potentially limit Americans' online entertainment choices.

The Internet is perfectly tuned for e-mail, says Roberts. But 40 years ago, he and the many others who helped nurture today's commercial Web never imagined, nor planned for, streaming high-definition television shows to travel through the wires.

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