Is the Internet broken?

Is the Internet broken?

Summary: Bob Frankston keeps telling me he's trying to fix the Internet.  Ask him what's wrong with it.

TOPICS: Browser

Bob Frankston keeps telling me he's trying to fix the Internet.  Ask him what's wrong with it.  But sit down.  The answer is complicated, you may not understand it all, but you'll walk away convinced that it is indeed broken.  Venture capitalist Brad Feld (Mobius Ventures) picked up on MIT Technology Review's cover story:

This month’s cover story was The Internet Is Broken and is a fascinating (and probably important) article about the cost the Internet’s basic flaws which result in the need for a “clean-slate approach” being advocated by MIT’s David Clark (an Internet old-timer and chief protocol architect from 1981 – 1989.)

Clean slate approach? I haven't looked at the MIT piece but I can assure you that there are a number of walled garden-builders that would start throwing Miracle-Gro on their flowers if there was even the slightest possibility that they could capitalize on a transition to such a thing.  The FUD and technomarket-babble would stoop to new lows and it would take an act of God for Internet users to avoid the wolves in sheeps' clothing.  That doesn't mean a clean slate isn't the right way to go.  We could certainly use one on the DRM front where, as evidenced by the introduction of yet another DRM scheme and associated media player (this time Google's, but tomorrow, someone else's), things are quickly spiraling out of control. 

Topic: Browser

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  • It is, but not quite the way you think

    The most valuable thing regarding the internet is data. I know a lot of people may say, oh no, it's email, but that can be handled quite well with what we have. The main problem I see with the internet is that it is just one great big flat file.

    What we need to do is to have a way( i.e. tools ) so that the data can be organized much in the same way as your common old every day library. We need to create indexes of indexes of indexes that allow data to be organized in a way that we can conveniently use it. Go back in time and read an old paper published in 1946, 'As We May Think' by Dr Vannevar Bush and also read his book of essays that was published sometime in the early to mid sixties titled 'As We May Think'.

    Any attempt to "FIX" the internet without the thoughts presented in these two publication will severely miss the point of the potential value that can be derived from this mass of data that is now electronically available.

    I know that this article is alluding to technical issues, but if the people that work on a project as large as this will be without the correct goals in mind, how can they get to a satisfactory conclusion?

  • WOOPS!

    I made a mistake in my reply. The name of the book was 'Memex Revisited' Sorry about that.

  • It's not broke, the Press are bored...

    The internet is still today what it was decades ago. An open platform for using as needed. And, it should remain that way. Policing the Internet is for the individual, not the government or any other source of control. If you get in trouble, it's because you were doing risky things. Period. Stay out of risky things and you won't see the problems of the internet. Any amount of control will only lead to disent and remorse. It will never downturn, as the article makes you believe, but will continue to grow and flourish. Though not at the rate of the past decade for sure.

    I get tired of folks who can't just take growth for what it is. Stocks don't need to increase 15% year after year. Companies don't need to obliterate their compitition time after time. And the internet doesn't need to be perfect. If it was, it wouldn't be usable.
  • Is the internet broken?

    Not broken, just foo free and uncontrolled. Face up to the truth...MANDATORY IDENTITY, licenses perhaps, but eliminate the uncontrolled, irresponsible anaonymity and elimiate the ability for 'anyone' to wear an electronic-cloak-of-anonymity.