free access to a worry-free Net where anything can talk to anything,
using publicly owned frequencies…just like old TV. |
Why can’t the Internet work that way?
After more than two decades of the commercial Internet, we must realize that bandwidth increases are no longer the answer. Of course, if you are in the network hardware business, then you may disagree because every time new standards come out, the result is another round of router sales. This global investment drags the world economy down hundreds of billions annually, and we get an Internet that was never designed for voice or video, and which leaves roughly 3.5 billion people and 5 billion things unconnected. According to the United Nations, it should be fixed by 2030 when the next generation of kids start school. Are we okay with that?
We have put our Internet ladder up against an Ethernet building, and so the pace of innovation is in the hands of the companies that build the Ethernet network hardware, when it should be with the carrier operators and the apps developers who make our lives better. The problem is compounded by product manufactures which have been afraid to choose the wrong platform, so they either delay going to market by years or do not go into specific markets at all. The Internet of Things and TV White Space market delays should serve as the ultimate proof of the problem, given that the FCC unlicensed frequency for both use cases in 2008. These markets should have become bigger than WiFi, which was created by a tiny sliver of FCC unlicensed frequency.
If the Net were a two year old and the doctor said point to where it hurts, it would point to layer 2 switch architecture efficiency. So we need to stop framing the discussion around bandwidth speed, because no amount of speed will fix an architectural problem. Think of it as taking a dirt road and making it wider…it’s still a dirt road!
Distributed Queue Switch Architecture was invented for cable TV, where broadcast is the norm. Ethernet, however, cannot do real broadcasting because the original Ethernet collapsed with a high number of devices, so Switched Ethernet was invented by superimposing router hardware to do the heavy lifting which the protocol could not do on its own, and that is why router companies control the pace of innovation. Ethernet’s inability to broadcast results in streaming at a 1:1 ratio. This is one of the major reasons the Net gets clogged, where every stream request gets its own feed. The good news is that streaming, multicast and broadcast all have the same cost of transmission. So it is the switch architecture, which determines if the latter two options are possible.
The ability for a transmission to be understood by millions of devices is a function of efficiency…not speed.
|A peek into what efficiency looks like…|
Our actual performance hugs theoretical perfection at all times, which is why it is the world’s first “near-perfect” switch architecture. Also notice how all of today’s networks take a dive at some point.
Translation: today’s Internet Protocol, but without all of its issues.