[e2e] Internet "architecture"

Joe Touch touch at isi.edu
Fri Apr 12 07:41:19 PDT 2013

Hi, all,

FYI, postel.org also hosts an Internet History email list. You might 
find more interested parties for this discussion there (though the topic 
is welcome here).

(I know some parties in this discussion already knew that, but wanted to 
remind any others on this list)

Joe (as list admin)

On 4/12/2013 7:04 AM, Noel Chiappa wrote:
>      > From: Dave Crocker <dhc2 at dcrocker.net>
>      > The original use of the term Internet was to describe a distinctive
>      > technical design
> Err, that would be '_i_nternet'; that term came first, by quite a few years.
> The term '_I_nternet', introduced later, was brought in to denote specifically
> to the large one which has nowdays swallowed most (But not all! The term
> 'airgap' exists for a reason!) of them.
>      > for a distributed, scalable data exchange fabric.
> I'm not sure how far I'd go with the 'scalable'. The earliest version only
> supported 256 networks, and it's been a constant struggle ever since to keep
> it growable! (Long diatribe on turns missed elided...)
> I think its main novelty, in terms of goals, was its ability to tie together
> many heterogeneous kinds of networks; it was that that led to many of its
> characteristic architectural aspects (e.g. moving the reliability into the
> hosts).
>      > What I'd class as distinctive were the TCP/IP separation
> True, although i) that wasn't in the earliest versions, and I _think_ (without
> checking) that CYCLADES had a similar kind of thing.
>      > the remarkably modest functionality of IP, even to the point of moving
>      > it's control plane to the next level up with ICMP
> Again, I think CYCLADES had that (ditto comment about having to check).
>      > and continuing with modest expectations the layer below (which made it
>      > possible to operate over any medium including birds.)
> I think this (along with the whole 'separate _inter_network header which stays
> the same as local headers come and go', with a single internet-wide naming
> domain which was used for the names in that header) is probably TCP/IP's big
> step over CYCLADES. (And I'd have to check if CYCLADES made an unreliable
> packet service available directly to users. If not, add that to the list.)
>      > This is usually characterized as moving robustness to the edges.
> I think those two are somewhat orthogonal, actually. Yes, to get that 'run
> over anything' you probably do have to move the reliability to the edges, but
> I can imagine homogeneous networks which also moved reliability to the edges.
> 	Noel

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