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Tech’ news in brief…

Net Pioneer Wants New Internet

“David Clark, who led the development of the internet in the 1970s, is working with the National Science Foundation on a plan for a whole new infrastructure to replace today’s global network.

The problem with today’s internet, according to Clark, is that its 30-year-old design, which allowed for the development of exciting new applications (the world wide web, e-commerce, file sharing, you name it), is now stifling further growth.” Read more…

Motorola’s ‘Africa Phone’ May Move Mountains

“Sendo’s clever mobile-phone platform didn’t keep the company afloat, but in Motorola’s hands it could be used to sink dictatorships.

The Africa Phone is a project inside Motorola, triggered by people who have discovered a remarkable statistic: that when 20 percent of a population has secure phone communications, dictators get overthrown.” Read more…

Bush administration annexes internet

“An extraordinary statement by the US government has sent shockwaves around the internet world and thrown the future of the network into doubt. In a worrying U-turn, the US Department of Commerce (DoC) has made it clear it intends to retain control of the internet’s root servers indefinitely. It was due to relinquish that control in September 2006, when its contract with overseeing body ICANN ended.

But what is most disturbing about Gallagher’s presentation, is how it endlessly refers to the president. The first slide has a picture of George Bush. The second begins “Thanks to the president’s policies, America’s economy is strong”. The next slide is “The president’s broadband vision”. The next slide leads with a quote from Bush and two pictures of him. And on and on it goes. There is barely a single slide that doesn’t quote from the president.” Read more…

By Wayne Smallman

Wayne is the man behind the Blah, Blah! Technology website, and the creator of the Under Cloud, a digital research assistant for journalists and academics.

2 replies on “Tech’ news in brief…”

I read the whole story on The Register that you quote about the US annexing the Internet, and it is indeed worrying. It’s worrying in two respects:

1/ The attitude it demonstrates from the US government (that it sees itself as the world’s policeman). Oddly enough not everybody in the rest of the world wants to be policed by the US, and if the US gets too heavy handed about it, there may just be a rebellion! (and this doesn’t just apply in the world of the internet). The policeman role is being wielded too often in the guise of self-protection (and self-interest). Don’t forget the British Empire did the same thing a few hundred years ago, and it didn’t last!

2/ The lack of understanding of the US government, in that, the heavy handedness of this parochial announcement could persuade somebody else that setting up an alternative internet would be a good idea, and there’s not a damn thing the US can do about it (apart from attempting to restrict their access to the technology!). Again, in a reference to the British Empire, it’s like somebody setting up an alternate trade route to get round the dominance of the East India Company.

So, incomplete understanding and the power to misuse it….. Hmmmmm

Then you may be interested in listening to a Science Friday interview with Tom Friedman about his new book: ‘The World is Flat’.

It’s a long interview; weighing in at about forty-minutes, but it’s worth listening to.

Everything isn’t all sweetness & light in America, and those that are in the know, know the current government and their incumbent policies are making the situation worse.

I’ve every reason to believe that another internet will come into being, because that’s exactly what I’ve been reading about recently.

And I’ve also got good reason to believe that while it might live in the same infrastructure as the existing one, things might not always be that way…

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