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The Internet

Internet2 and You 83

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the more-pron-faster dept.
eldavojohn writes "With a name like Internet2 and such high press coverage, you might think that's the future of the Internet servicing our homes. But Ars Technica looks more closely at what the odds actually are for it to become mainstream. When will you see the effects of the software, planning and hardware that went into Internet2 in your home? The odds are the very distant future — if at all. From the article: 'The Internet as we now know it is anything but obsolete. The amount of dedicated hardware and personal attention required to get networks like Internet2 and DANTE working simply makes them uneconomical for most common uses. And, unless a majority of networked content moves onto these dedicated networks, then having access to them may not do users much good. If the academic networks change the commercial ones, they'll do it in an evolutionary way, by providing improved hardware and better software for running traffic within the constraints of the existing economic structure.'"
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Internet2 and You

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  • by somersault (912633) on Wednesday May 07, 2008 @09:48AM (#23323266) Homepage Journal

    With a name like Internet2 and such high press coverage, you might think that's the future of the internet servicing our homes
    House: Oh hello, thanks for getting here so quickly!
    Internet2: I hear you've been having some problems with your tubes, can you direct me to the back door?
  • by Chrisq (894406) on Wednesday May 07, 2008 @09:58AM (#23323348)
    The amount of dedicated hardware and personal attention required to get networks like Internet2 and DANTE working simply makes them uneconomical for most common uses.

    Before the world wide web, when the internet was mainly news groups, uucp and email (with pling addresses [wikipedia.org], because there was no dns for routing. I used to think how great it would be if ordinary people could afford to connect, not just academic institutions and large technology companies. The cost ad difficulty of configuration was prohibitive.

    This is where internet2 is currently. It doesn't mean it will be in a couple of decades.
    • While you make a good analogy and your conclusion is possible, I think it's more likely that the current Internet will just continue to increase in bandwidth and services to end users. I would not be surprised to see Internet2 one day be either still stuck as an academic only network, or just dissapear altogether.
      • by El Torico (732160)
        I would not be surprised to see Internet2 one day be either still stuck as an academic only network,...

        Well, that wouldn't be a bad thing though. Internet2 would be used for research and other serious work and the Internet would be used for games, porn, inane myspace pages, and (of course) our favorite message board.

        • you mean you guys still like to browse the teletubby forums too??!?!

          oh man i thought i was all alone
    • Well, while that's true, there's a difference: back then it didn't have a real competitor.

      The Internet grew to fill, basically, a void that had existed there for ever. Yes, there were alternatives like snail mail, and later some proprietary closed networks, but none of them offered quite the same things.

      By contrast, now Internet 2 would come to compete head to head with Internet 1. Which already gives most people what they want.

      Even the incentive to do some work to bring it down to the masses, well, it was
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      I've said it before and will say it again: I don't think that the common person will ever have access to I2. It was designed and built to provided high quality, high bandwidth connections for research purposes. Any piggy backing by other applications and uses is incidental, and if it were to interfere with the academic work that I2 is used for, I'm reasonably sure it would be stopped. Now, I'm not saying that everything that makes I2 so great WON'T come to the general consumer... but it won't come in th
    • The difference is that Internet2 has competition in place where the original Internet didn't.
    • by Guy Harris (3803)

      Before the world wide web, when the internet was mainly news groups, uucp and email (with pling addresses, because there was no dns for routing.

      According to RFC 921 [faqs.org], the host table was to be decommissioned in September 1984, although it notes that hadn't been done yet. I don't think they were off by much, however, so that was a long time before the WWW.

      Or perhaps by "the internet" you meant the Matrix [catb.org] (Quarterman coined the term long before the movie...)? At that point, the ARPANET and Internet were mai

    • by jopsen (885607)
      I think the big difference is that today we already have a network infrastructure... To built a new one when one is already in place is just waste of time and money... Just look at how long time it takes to move to IPv6, yes I know there's a lot of other issues regarding that...
  • by csoto (220540) on Wednesday May 07, 2008 @09:58AM (#23323350)
    I don't get the point of the article, except to point out this is exactly why Internet2 was created. It's a combination of a research vehicle for advanced internetworking, as well as a "series of tubes" to skip traffic around "commodity IP services" for the participants.

    The "Internet" isn't your "broadband" provider. It's the interconnects between networks. Just like the interstates and all the developments in building/maintaining those have very little to do with the street and driveway you use daily, Internet2 has very little to do with the IP connection to your home.
    • I don't know, I travel 50 miles of interstate each way to get to and from work,leaving home at 5AM and getting back at ~5:30 PM.
    • From what I understand, Internet2 is mainly academic. According to my professors (many of whom are working on it)say right now the focus is academic usage.
    • Internet2 is poorly named. It's not meant to be the replacement to the consumer's .com Internet, it's meant to be the replacement for .edu and .gov's Internet that got ruined by .com.

      In the bad old days of Napster, Internet2 used to be the primary venue of illegal file sharing because they connected college dorm to college dorm. Now, not so much. It's for researcher to researcher connections in the university offices.
  • by samael (12612) * <Andrew@Ducker.org.uk> on Wednesday May 07, 2008 @10:02AM (#23323396) Homepage
    They may well build links between the internet and internet2, and ideas ill undoubtedly osmose across, but did people really expect internet2 to be rolled out to replace the internet? And if so, how did they expect it to happen?
    • by mckinnsb (984522)
      I'm guessing that there are only a few groups of people that actually expected Internet2 to replace the internet:
      1) The people that work at Internet2.
      2) The press covering Internet2.
      3) People who read tech news but don't know much about the internet. This group can bleed into 2) and 1) above.

      This is really a de-evolution of the internet, and is very similar to how the internet used to operate before a lot of convenient protocols were set up. The only difference here is back in the day, Ye Old Intern
      • by pyite (140350)
        What should be interesting are the results of some of their "risky" network algorithm setups - removing, for instance, acknowledgments (ACK packets) from each individual sent packet.

        Well this is easy, and it can be done on the existing Internet. Use UDP.

        Internet2 was never supposed to replace "The Internet." It's best thought of as a collection of private peering and transit agreements between research institutions.

    • For example bittorrent users that are on networks that have connections to I2 and the regular internet act as proxies between each network.

      Neither one knows about it, but the packets flow between the networks via p2p applications like bittorrent.

      I think there IS some opportunity for some commercial providers though. College students use a LOT of bandwidth for many things like gmail, etc.

      Having a presence on I2 might be good for some things like gmail.
    • I expected them to use current technology for their infrastructure unlike internet1.

      Eventually someone would say something like "look at all these shmoes with their crappy 3/15Mb connections..." and plug Internet1 in because the bandwidth it can use is so pathetically small.

      Kind of like I share my wireless with people at dialup+ speeds, I can support several hundred of them... dozens at a time with negligible performance hits.

      Well that's how it would work if the rest of the internet had the shameful i
  • by WheresMyDingo (659258) on Wednesday May 07, 2008 @10:08AM (#23323448)
    I've heard the odd internets are better. Only one sample so far though.
    • by gstoddart (321705)

      I've heard the odd internets are better. Only one sample so far though.

      Well, so far, this one is plenty odd. :-P

      Cheers
  • That's something I can behind. I've participated in the LHC@Home program, and I at least feel that this sort of thing is in keeping with the general spirit of the Internet. I just have this fear that the whole thing is going to be decimated by the entertainment industry with video on demand and the like. I prefer we keep the cable infrastructure in tact for video delivery. I think the Internet is much more useful in its current state.
  • Who paid for it? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by rs79 (71822) <hostmaster@open-rsc.org> on Wednesday May 07, 2008 @10:08AM (#23323460) Homepage
    Keep in mind if you bought a domain name in the past 10 years you paid for this.

    Back when domains were $100 for two years, 30% went into an "intellectual infrastructure fund". This was set up by Don Mitchell of the National Science Foundation who has aegis over domains and administered the NSI contract.

    Don felt the internet did well because of the IETF process (not the IETF per se) and created this fund to keep that "pure". Ie it wouldn't need corporate sponsors. He though the money wouold be used for workshops, research grants what have you.

    When ICANN reared it's ugly head Mike Roberts convinced congress to give him the money to build internet2 in the US. Never mind that people all over the world paid into that fund.

    It's an overpriced testbed that has absolutely nothing to do with reality or what the next version of the Internet will be.
  • Oblig. (Score:5, Funny)

    by sootman (158191) on Wednesday May 07, 2008 @10:11AM (#23323482) Homepage Journal
    I'll skip Internet2. I'm waiting for Internet3.11 for Workgroups.
  • There can be no such thing as internet2. Net is a concept. Protocols can be revised but there can be no net2. It's just net, like gravity. May be Montana has something to add?
  • Some care to explain (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Bombula (670389) on Wednesday May 07, 2008 @10:22AM (#23323598)
    Would someone like to explain, for the benefit of us still in the dark, why internet 2 can't just be connected to the rest of the internet? I mean, if I have a machine whose hardware and software enable it to accept incoming connections and push data in and out super fast, why does it matter who connects to it? If someone who old gear connects, they're going to run at the limits of their gear. If someone with new gear like mine connects, they're going to achieve higher performance. What's the big deal?
    • by kellyb9 (954229)
      I think the point is to keep it in the intellectual realm - colleges, hospitals, research, etc. As its been explained to me, internet2 is what the internet was supposed to be. It would make sense, in this instance, to keep them seperate.
    • by nuzak (959558)
      Would someone like to explain, for the benefit of us still in the dark, why internet 2 can't just be connected to the rest of the internet

      Because it was built for research purposes that don't include being oversubscribed by ISP's that are disinterested in maintaining the infrastructure.
    • by Talderas (1212466)

      Would someone like to explain, for the benefit of us still in the dark, why internet 2 can't just be connected to the rest of the internet? I mean, if I have a machine whose hardware and software enable it to accept incoming connections and push data in and out super fast, why does it matter who connects to it? If someone who old gear connects, they're going to run at the limits of their gear. If someone with new gear like mine connects, they're going to achieve higher performance. What's the big deal?

      Look at the unwashed masses. You want to let THEM into Internet2? Internet2 is like that club where you have to know someone who knows someone to just get into it.

      • by Mateo13 (1250522)

        Look at the unwashed masses. You want to let THEM into Internet2? Internet2 is like that club where you have to know someone who knows someone to just get into it.
        Um no it's not. You just have to go to a school or work for a company thats hooked up to it. I really don't see what all the commotion is about. Universities have there own networks...big whoop.
    • by skiingyac (262641) on Wednesday May 07, 2008 @11:11AM (#23324118)
      I think your question has mostly been answered by the replies already, but also wanted to further point out that Internet2 is not necessarily faster than the Internet, it is more about studying the a new/different architecture.

      Last I knew my university's regular Internet connection, which is used at something like 1/4 of its capacity at peak times by the 25k or so users, was several times times faster than the university's Internet2 connection.
    • Academia.

      Internet2 is a bunch of bullshit some researches dreamed up to get grant money. They spouted a bunch of shit about preserving the integrity of research and education, keeping the evil corporations out of Internet2, etc. etc.

      So now they're laying / buying new cables between major universities and other "noble" institutions. This is a HUGE cost, and the corporations make tons of money off of it - they get to sell new equipment, and someone has to be contracted out to lay those cables. Sometimes th
    • by bockelboy (824282)
      The Internet2 is a clever name for a semi-public, semi-private ISP which provides a large amount of bandwidth to universities. The way they can afford to do this is by having a private network only between paying universities and not having to pay for network data to travel across commercial networks.
      Oh yeah, and it also performs some research. Note how none of it even comes up in the article
  • You can look at Internet2 to the regular Internet as ESPN2 is to regular ESPN.

    Oh, wait, this is Slashdot. Nobody's going to understand that...
    • by dwye (1127395)

      You can look at Internet2 to the regular Internet as ESPN2 is to regular ESPN.

      Oh, wait, this is Slashdot. Nobody's going to understand that...

      So Mike and Mike have a morning drive-time broadcast on the Internet2, as well?

  • Internet2 (Score:2, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward
    All of this Web 2.0 stuff I keep hearing about: will I have to get this Internet2 to use it?
  • Anyone remember when Internet2 was big for file-sharing? I was actually never able to get on this when it was popular, but I heard that super blazingly fast speeds were the norm when using this.

    As far as it being commercially viable, I think a lot of academia would have problems with that. Even though the "Internet" seems to be outdated (which I don't understand, as IPv6 is surfacing and then there's this Web 2.0 thing), Internet2 was and still is the playground for most of the academics to try stuff out

    • About 5-6 years ago, I worked at an academic research lab with access to Internet2. I remember being absolutely amazed that I could download RedHat ISOs (from another University's mirror) in just about 2 minutes.

      Haven't had any real experience with it since, but I was certainly impressed at the time.
    • by Rallion (711805)
      I used it for a bit of file-sharing. It was pretty amazing.
    • by X0563511 (793323)
      Web2.0 doesn't really have anything to do with "the internet". Web2.0 just has to do with a small subset of protocols and applications.

      The internet is just a smidgen bigger than www.
  • Misconception (Score:5, Informative)

    by realjd (1125323) on Wednesday May 07, 2008 @10:44AM (#23323846)
    It seems that there is a common misconception that the internet2 is this great, new internet. It's not. It's just a set of private, high speed network links connecting research institutes that operates transparently with the regular internet. They configure their routers to route traffic onto the faster, internet2 backbone if the destination is also on the internet2 backbone. If a student at Purdue, for instance, types "mit.edu" into Firefox, the website will be served over the internet2 backbone instead of the regular, slower internet. It made for some excellent P2P downloads when I was in school. There was even a DC++ hub restricted to IP addresses at internet2 schools so as to guarantee crazy fast downloads.
    • by Digi-John (692918)
      Yes, somebody who apparently knows how I2 works! We're on I2 at my university, and that's how it works... Linux users, make sure to choose universities (Georgia Tech is a good one, I think) when you're selecting repositories/ISO download sites. And yes, we used to have a DC hub (DC++ is the client) on I2, but that got shut down at least 2 years ago; I never used it because it left the university network and could not be trusted.

      Basically, mod parent up Informative.
    • by Kadin2048 (468275)
      Just wanted to say thanks for actually explaining the damn thing.

      That makes a lot more sense; I had been imagining two totally separate, air-gapped networks (like the secure MilNets), and that just seemed like a giant pain in the ass for no real gain.

      Laying extra backbone capacity for educational/research use doesn't seem like a bad idea. (Although what happened to all that dark fiber people were talking about a few years ago? Is it all in regular revenue use now? Or are they using some of that for proje
  • If only ... (Score:2, Interesting)

    by ThirdPrize (938147)
    Just imagine a world where websites worked on every browser, where websites and URLs are a bit more logical, where you don't need 5 different techniologies to do one thing. Imagine an internet was designed to work properly.

    Now look at what we have. A dozen groups trying to do their own thing a dozen different ways with a dozen different technologies. Some say the way the internet evolved is its greatest feature while i say it is its worst.
  • "The Internet as we now know it is anything but obsolete..."

    The uses, as far as news broadcasts, social sites, and a myriad commercial apps are not obsolete. However, isn't the exhaustion of IPv4 an obsolencence, given no viable plan for IPv6?
    "As of November 2007, a daily updated report projected that the IANA pool of unallocated addresses would be exhausted in May 2010, with the various Regional Internet Registries using up their allocations from IANA in April 2011."
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IPv [wikipedia.org]
  • catch 22.0 (Score:3, Funny)

    by mattwarden (699984) on Wednesday May 07, 2008 @12:39PM (#23325626) Homepage
    The reason internet2 won't pick up is because it is stuck in a catch 22.0 No one will upgrade internet2 to web 2.0 until enough people come from internet1 to internet2. But why would anyone leave internet1 with web 2.0 to go to internet2 with web 1.0? It doesn't make sense.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    http://www.net.princeton.edu/traceroute.html [princeton.edu]

    Put in google.com (not a member of the Internet2 consortium)

    1 gigagate1 (128.112.128.114) 0.498 ms 0.289 ms 0.265 ms
    2 vgate1 (128.112.12.22) 0.483 ms 0.319 ms 0.305 ms
    3 patriotgate (204.153.48.14) 0.989 ms 0.976 ms 0.917 ms
    4 g-4-1.hlb-c2.patmedia.net (24.225.237.173) 1.276 ms 0.838 ms 0.978 ms
    5 reserved.above.net.48.184.208.in-addr.arpa (208.184.48.197) 2.612 ms 2.689 ms 2.943 ms
    6 so-0-2-0.mpr2.dca2.us.above.net (64.125.26.105)
  • Disclaimer: I've worked with Internet2 for about 8 years. Now I work with the LHC guys, too.

    Internet2 has been on Slashdot a number of times. Each time people focus on the network. To me be fair the networking stuff is kind of cool. They're doing some interesting things; tackling some hard problems, providing feedback to hardware vendors that makes their products a bit better, dealing with various political aspects of international networking. All nice things.

    However, the networking group is only one o
    • by Diakoneo (853127)
      Thank you! I couldn't believe I went through all the posts and everyone was talking like Internet2 is a thing.
      Internet2 [wikipedia.org] is a "non-profit consortium which develops and deploys advanced network applications and technologies." What everyone is referring to here is called the Abilene Network." [wikipedia.org]
  • http://www.internet2.edu/pubs/networkmap.pdf [internet2.edu] Good thing they made a little turning in the detroit - cleveland connection otherwise Canada would be on the internet2.
  • If you consider SMTP to be part of the Internet, I highly disagree.

    SMTP was never designed to do what it does today, and must be replaced as quickly as possible. It's been obsolete for a long while now.

  • I thought we already had web 2.0?

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