Mark Gritter (markgritter) wrote,
Mark Gritter

"Are We Slowly Losing Control of the Internet?"

Karl Auerbach ponders whether the growing complexity, diversity, and general bad design of Internet protocols makes it impossible to build a stable Internet.

You would have thought that in this internet age that we might have learned that clarity of internet protocol design is a great virtue and that management, diagnostics, and security are not afterthoughts but primary design goals.

There is a lot of noise out there about internet stability. And a lot of people and businesses are risking their actual and economic well being on the net, and the applications layered on it, really being stable and reliable.

But I have great concern that our approach to the internet resembles a high pillar of round stones piled on top of other round stones - we should not be surprised when it begins to wobble and then falls to the ground.

I am beginning to foresee a future internet in which people involved in management, troubleshooting, and repair are engaged in a Sisyphean effort to provide service in the face of increasingly non-unified design of internet protocols. And in that future, users will have to learn to expect outages and become accustomed to dealing with service provider customer service "associates" whose main job is to buy time to keep customers from rioting while the technical repair team tries to figure out what happened, where it happened, and what to do about it.

I don't think it is as bad as all that. But it does illustrate the need to think of ways to make Internet infrastructure more robust in the face of badly-designed (not to mention actively malicious) applications. The notion that the network itself may have to contribute to E2E stability and security is anathema to many network researchers and developers, though.
Tags: dns, geek
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