[e2e] What if there were no well known numbers?

David P. Reed dpreed at reed.com
Mon Aug 7 08:50:38 PDT 2006

Joe/Jon - "stop - you're both right!" (from an old TV commercial).

Ultimately there are two essential parties to any message - the sender 
and the receiver - and a collection of unessential but helpful third 
parties (the network components that may help facilitate that 

The sender and receiver make a JOINT decision to send and to accept the 
sending.   Neither comes first in any essential way.

Jon is focused on delegating to third parties the job of blocking 
unwanted sends.  Joe is focused on delegating to third parties the job 
of presenting opportunities to receive to anyone who wants to.

Neither of you wants the third parties to become first parties - 
deciding on their own which communications should happen.  (I posit 
this, though it is evident only implicitly in your views).   Of course 
there are third parties who very much view it as their right to decide 
both who can send and who can receive messages.  (Verizon, for example, 
wants an exclusive franchise to decide who can receive broadband in the 
areas they provide service for and also an exclusive franchise to decide 
who can provide content that is received; governments want to provide 
non-discretionary policy controls as well, focused on blocking 
communications to which the government is not allowed to read the content).

But it is important to be skeptical of the idea that "the network" 
(which is hopefully a collection of independent and autonomous networks, 
at least in the case of the Internet) can provide any sort of 
non-discretionary guarantees of protection.   At best (end-to-end 
argument here) we ought to be able to make it easy for joint decisions 
to exchange messages to happen, and the number of non-joint decisions 
that are unwanted should be kept to a dull roar.

Joe Touch wrote:
> Jon Crowcroft wrote:
>> In missive <44D614B8.8020303 at isi.edu>, Joe Touch typed:
>>  >>> oh and I think we should have an explicit protocol for establishing a
>>  >>> capability to _receive_
>>  >>> ip packets
>>  >>We do. It's called attaching to the Internet. IMO, that means you're up
>>  >>for receiving probes to determine whether to proceed.
>>  >>This is what motivated my interpretation of the network neutrality
>>  >>issue, that originally was presented at a workshop about a year ago:
>>  >>http://www.isi.edu/touch/internet-rights/
>> Joe
>> a capability to receive would indicate _who_ you want to receive
>> packets _from_.
> All forms of communication are bootstrapped by first determining if you
> are the intended receiver. Making the receiver initiate that process
> only relabels the endpoints; the receiver now needs to initiate
> communication with new parties. The net result is that senders can no
> longer reach any new parties. That's a very uninteresting network, IMO.
>> what we have now is the right to be bombarded or not. different.
>> the problem with many capability based systems is that they require
>> the sender to get a cpaability to send to a receiver which either
>> moves the problem to the capability server for the receiver which
>> means that then gets bombradred (see papers on denial of capbiability
>> attacks)
>> or else puts the receiver at the mercy of a 3rd party (probably
>> distributed and overprovisioned) cqapability service - i.e. less net
>> neutrality
>> requireing a receiver to control who can speak to them as a
>> fundamental part of connectivity (I have a paper i might submit to a
>> hot workshop about one approach to
>> the implementation details for this if i can get around to it...)
>> is an altogether more neutral scheme...
> That'd be interesting only if it could show how to initiate
> communication with a new party without reversing the labels.
> Joe

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