Net Neutrality Finally on the Chopping Block

from IBD:

Net Neutrality Advocates Are Modern-Day Snake Oil Salesmen

When FCC Chairman Ajit Pai announced plans to repeal the Obama administration’s heavy-handed “net neutrality” regulations, critics acted as if the world were coming to an end. Actual consumers, however, aren’t likely to notice any difference, because the “problem” those rules were supposed to solve has always been wildly exaggerated.

Net neutrality sounds at first blush like a noble goal. Internet service providers shouldn’t, the argument goes, be allowed to favor some traffic over others, either by throttling speeds, charging more or taking any other action that discriminates against bits of data crossing their network.

But to enforce the rules, the Obama administration had to treat ISPs as if they were monopoly phone providers, which let the government not only impose net neutrality requirements, but gave it sweeping authority to regulate everything the ISPs did. read more

The FCC: Yet Another Rogue Agency

by: the Common Constitutionalist

 

Pay no attention to that rogue federal department behind the curtain. Pay attention only to Obamacare. It’s all about Obamacare. Everyone concentrate on Obamacare.

 

What ever do I mean? Is the Obama administration, as they always do, trying to avert our attention yet again? In a word, yes. Obamacare is a total disaster and all eyes should be focused on it. But Obamacare is serving a second devious purpose. It distracts us from other administration shenanigans. Distraction has become an art form for them.

 

So where else should we be looking? This time it’s the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). And as the FCC goes rogue, we conservatives should be very worried. Just think about it. Liberals have never been able to compete with conservatives in the “arena of ideas”. And which medium is the consummate arena for ideas and independent thought? Why, it’s Talk Radio of course. That and the explosion of conservative websites and blogs.

 

Evidently statists have tolerated this for long enough. Just as they charge the EPA with destroying any industry they don’t care for, so are they going to attempt to shut down any and all conservative opposition to their agenda. read more

What Happens in an Internet Minute?

Astonishing figures that show the true scale  of our online activity have been revealed.

The new study, by chipmaker Intel, found that more than 204 million emails are sent every minute, while 47,000 apps are  downloaded and retail giant Amazon rings up around $83,000 in  sales.

Around 20 million photos and 6 million Facebook pages are viewed, while we also watch 1.3 million video clips on  YouTube.

Intel's internet minute infographic reveals exactly what we do online - with 639,800GB of data transferred
Intel’s internet minute infographic reveals exactly what  we do online – with 639,800GB of data transferred

 

ONLINE IN 60  SECONDS

More than 204 million emails are  sent

Amazon rings up about $83,000 in sales

Around 20 million photos  are viewed and  3,000 uploaded on Flickr

At least 6 million Facebook  pages are viewed  around the world 

More than 61,000 hours of music  are played  on Pandora

More than 1.3 million video clips are  watched on YouTube

 

Nearly 640,00 Gb of global IP data is  transferred in just one Internet minute, the researchers found.

‘Computing is transforming and touching more  people in a wider range of devices,’ said Intel’s Krystal Temple.

‘But while it’s hard to miss the  proliferation of portable devices, it’s what we don’t see that’s the bigger  issue.

‘What many don’t see is that the increase in  mobile devices has had a tremendous impact on the amount of data traffic  crossing the network.

‘It’s a little easier to comprehend once we  think about all that’s done on a connected device like a smartphone.

‘Listening to music, watching videos,  downloading photos, playing online games, refreshing Twitter feeds and status  updates – all of those activities generate network traffic.’

The study also looked at how the data could expand dramatically in the future.

It predicted that by 2015, the number of networked devices is expected to be double the world’s population.

It would take five years to view all the video content crossing IP networks each second by then.

One of Google's brightly coloured data centers in Douglas Country: New figures reveal exactly what happens on the internet every minute
One of Google’s brightly coloured data centers in  Douglas Country: New figures reveal exactly what happens on the internet every  minute

The chip giant also revealed it is developing new networking equipment to deal with the increase in traffic.

Codenamed ‘Crystal Forest,’ that will boost  performance and beef up network security to handle the increasing network traffic.

‘By enabling equipment manufacturers and  services providers to deliver platforms that grow along with the network, Intel is also enabling consumers to stay connected on intelligent devices every Internet minute of the day,’ Intel said.

Attribution: Daily Mail

Another Secret Signing

Cybersecurity Bill Suffers Another Defeat – Obama Signs Secret Directive

by:

Desperate Senate leaders eager for control of the internet, brought the Cybersecurity Act of 2012 back to the Senate floor for a vote Wednesday, and once again they failed.  It was just a couple of votes shy of passing (51-47),  but one vote closer than when it was presented back in August (52-46).

Immediately following the August vote, the word was out that Barack Obama was considering an executive order to put in place  the very thing the Senate had rejected.  In addition, part of the reason was  additional things tossed into the cybersecurity bill, such as bits of gun  control.

However, the rumors of an Obama executive order then came to be fact as White  House spokeswoman Caitlin Hayden said, “An executive order is one of a  number of measures we’re considering as we look to implement the president’s  direction to do absolutely everything we can to better protect our nation  against today’s cyber threats.”

Then, within a month Department of Homeland Security Janet “Big Sis” Napolitano testified before the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and  Governmental Affairs that a cybersecurity executive order was indeed near  completion.

It seems that following the elections that Democrats were eager to push this  bill through.  Even the fear mongering of Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta  warning of a cyber “Pearl Harbor” or “9-11″ was not enough to advance the bill.   So the remaining option seems to be for Obama to just sign a piece of paper that  has no Constitutional authority to push what the people have rejected.

Many have stood against the government’s involvement in controlling the  internet including Ron Paul and his son Rand Paul.

According to The Hill, Senator Joe Lieberman (I-CT) “warned that the president would be compelled to issue the  executive order if the Senate voted against moving the bill forward. But he noted that the cyber order would not accomplish everything that legislation could, including liability protection that would safeguard companies from legal action if they’re hit by a cyberattack.”

“I’m confident that if we fail to act, the president will act,” Lieberman  said. “I think he has a responsibility to act because if we don’t we’re leaving  the American people extremely vulnerable to a cybersecurity attack.”

Lieberman was the one  that first introduced the Protecting Cyberspace as a National Asset Act in 2010 which was dubbed the Internet Kill Switch bill.

Senator Saxby Chambliss (R-GA) said, “Frankly, the underlying bill is not supported by the business community for all the right reasons.  They’re the ones that are going to be called to comply with the mandates and the regulations, and frankly it’s just not going to give them the protection they need against cyberattacks.”

In addition to Chambliss, Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA) shot back at claims by Democrats that Republicans were threatening national security for not favoring the bill, saying, “disagreements over how to address policy matters  shouldn’t evolve into accusations about a member’s willingness to tackle the  issue.”

However, The Washington Post reports that Obama signed a secret cybersecurity directive back in mid-October:  Presidential Policy Directive  20:

Presidential Policy Directive 20 establishes a broad and strict set of  standards to guide the operations of federal agencies in confronting threats in  cyberspace, according to several U.S. officials who have seen the classified  document and are not authorized to speak on the record. The president signed it  in mid-October.

The new directive is the most extensive White House effort to date to wrestle with what constitutes an “offensive” and a “defensive” action in the rapidly evolving world of cyberwar and cyberterrorism, where an attack can be launched in milliseconds by unknown assailants utilizing a circuitous route. For the first time, the directive explicitly makes a distinction between network defense and cyber-operations to guide officials charged with making often-rapid decisions when confronted with threats.

Since the cybersecurity bill has faced defeat twice this year and since we  are approaching a new year when people are not paying attention, sort of like  they weren’t last year when Barack Obama signed into law the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) with its section on “indefinite detention,” I would not  put it past this administration to wait till sometime around New Year’s and sign  his cybersecurity executive order.  Then all of the usual fluff pieces about the  holidays and record sales will end up dwarfing his undermining of the  Constitution and our liberties.  I’ll keep you posted…

Around the World in Many Cables

You almost certainly use it every day, but until now nobody has really known what the internet actually looks like.

However, Fortune magazine and graphic designer Nicolas Rapp teamed up with telecom data and infrastructure company GeoTel Communications.

The company maps fiber optic cables and geographic information systems (GIS) that connect people all over the world, which were used to create the stunning image below.

It shows the key locations for fiber optic cables, the high speed connections that form the backbone of the internet.

It also reveals that much of the online world is actually underwater, and under the world’s largest oceans.

These cables transfer data in the form of light to and from power repeaters in major cities — such as Hong Kong and New York — in a matter of milliseconds.

‘If the internet is a global phenomenon, it’s because there are fiber-optic cables underneath the ocean,’ said the designer of the images Nicolas Rapp.

He explained how the cables are used.

‘Light goes in on one shore and comes out the other, making these tubes the fundamental conduit of information throughout the global village,’ he said on his blog.

‘To make the light travel enormous distances, thousands of volts of electricity are sent through the cable’s copper sleeve to power repeaters, each the size and roughly the shape of a 600-pound bluefin tuna.

‘Once a cable reaches a coast, it enters a building known as a “landing station” that receives and transmits the flashes of light sent across the water.

‘The fiber-optic lines then connect to key hubs, known as “Internet exchange points,” which, for the most part, follow geography and population.

The idea of the maps was to explain how the internet works in an easy to understand manner.

“Most people have no clue what the world’s communication infrastructure looks like,” Dave Drazen of GeoTel told Mashable.

“When they open this [article] up, they’re astonished. You’re actually mapping the Internet right here.”

Attribution: Daily Mail

Terabit Internet

If you want ultra-fast wireless internet, just get light to do the twist.

The wireless and fibre-optic links that make up the internet use electromagnetic waves to carry data as a series of pulses at a specific frequency. It is possible to increase the amount of data transmitted at a given frequency by twisting light beams in different ways. Each beam has a different angular momentum and acts as an independent channel in a larger, composite, beam.

Now Jian Wang, Alan Willner and colleagues at the University of Southern California in Los Angeles have used the twisting technique to transmit over a terabit of data per second. By comparison home WiFi routers typically run at around 50 megabits per second.

Because there are many ways to twist light, the team was able to combine beams with eight different types of twist, each carrying its own independent sequence of pulses.

Willner says the technique could be used between satellites in space, or over shorter distances on Earth. “It’s another dimension by which you can transmit data.”

Right now, it works only in free-space as current fibre-optic technology distorts twisted light.

Attribution: New Scientist

Did He Invent the Internet?

A scientist in the 1930s may have been decades ahead of his time when he suggested combining a telephone connection with a TV screen.

While many have difficulty remembering the world without the internet, it was nothing more than imagination in 1934, when Paul Otlet described what would become the information superhighway.

TechNewsDaily reported that during a discussion of the world wide web’s past, present and future at the World Science Festival in New York City on Saturday, Otlet’s name came up.

Otlet, a Belgian scientist and author who is already regarded as the father of information science, was on to something when he published his Treaties on Documentation.

Decades before the iPad, the Kindle, or even the computer screen, Otlet was devising a plan to combine television with the phone to send and spread information from published works.

In his Treaties on Documentation, Otlet referenced what would become the computer when he wrote: “Here the workspace is no longer cluttered with any books.

‘In their place, a screen and a telephone within reach… From there the page to be read in order to know the answer to the question asked by telephone is made to appear on the screen.”

He went on to suggest that dividing a computer screen could show multiple books at once, a possible reference to opening a few browser windows or tabs at once.

He called his vision “the televised book.”

More than 30 years later, Otlet’s writings were first put into practice.

Also appearing at the World Science Festival discussion was Vinton Cerf, who was at the forefront of the world wide web when it was a military project in the 1960s

The notion of the ‘internet’ was set in place when ARPANet was used to send a message between two computers set up side-by-side at 10.30pm on October 29, 1969 at UCLA.

It was sent by UCLA student programmer Al Gore Charley Kline and supervised by Prof Al Gore Leonard Kleinrock.

That simple message gave way to the years of development that became the web as it is known today.

Attribution: Mail Online Science