Networking is growing exponentially. This growth has been instrumental for the transformation of today’s world towards virtualisation, globalisation, and immediacy. Everybody is competing to have a virtual counterpart to each real world object (virtualisation); everybody is capable of creating and accessing information (globalisation); and the distance between research, and corporate, worlds becomes smaller and smaller (immediacy). In short, networking has a very strong impact on every aspect of life.
Current Trends in Computer Networking
Let us briefly discuss the present day networking trends: We are now using so much of computer resources that was even unimaginable before a few decades; e.g., e-greeting cards contain more computing power than all computers before 1950. To give another example, Genesis’s game has more processing than 1976 Cray supercomputer. This revolution has been possible due to the participation of users and their ever increasing requirements. Users want maximum throughput, minimum delay, minimum loss of information, and minimum delay in variations. The bandwidth requirements are doubling every four months; we need to transmit text, voice, and video on a single infrastructure. It is important to note that in E-commerce, a considerable chunk of money, around 20-30% of revenue, is spent on networking. Another important development in the recent times is the merger of Content Providers and Content Transporters; e.g., the merger of phone companies, cable companies, entertainment industry and computer companies.
This has led to new realisations. We now understand networking speed and reliability are two keys to productivity. We observe a distinct process of convergence that is taking place in both corporate ventures and technological innovations. The picture illustrates this point: we are entering an era where contents, computing, and communications will be integrated on a single platform. This offers a technological challenge. We need more storage capacity; the machines need to have more computing power; and above all, a high speed secured network is needed. In the context of the last aspect, we realise that broadband technology is the viable option for the requirements of networking.
The current technological progress indicates that the issue of networking bottleneck will soon be resolved, and users will be able to handle information and gain access via handwriting and voice recognition. And, this will allow them to use the internet in a very natural way.