[Nottingham] Weird Stuff

David nottingham at mailman.lug.org.uk
Wed Sep 11 20:48:00 2002

> IP works better when in small networks, rather than large behemoth
> networks, that have millions of users, gig's of traffics, and 2 New
> dealers on the support line.

	Funny you should mention small networks... I was mulling today about
the future of the internet post-Palladium, i.e. when the internet as we
know it is over and it's owned and operated (and edited) solely by
Microsoft.  Seems to me the only way computing will continue to serve a
useful purpose (aside from making money for fatcats, that is) when
Palladium comes along would be to have non-Palladium machines in small
community networks based around local commerce and communication. 
Perhaps even on wi-fi networks, so no ISPs would be required, all you
would need would be machines with wireless network cards and someone
with some Linux ISOs to burn and pass around.  Of course this is
assuming two things:

A) That non-Palladium equipment will still be available anywhere in the
world, and...

B) That non-Palladium equipment will still be legal.

	Both of which are highly unlikely if Microsoft and others get their
	I can see a number of profound advantages of small community wireless
networks running on open source, including:

1) No ISPs means no blocking of websites they don't approve of - a truly
FREE and OPEN internet.

2) More people using open source means more open source development and
greater rates of software innovation.

3) Smaller networks means easier administration, fewer outages, and
content more geared towards people in the immediate area so more people
would be likely to want to use the network (and hence be better informed
about issues that affect them).

	Don't worry, I am absolutely aware that I am dreaming out loud here,
and that the future of computing will be dictated to us by Redmond, WA.
whether we like it or not.  I know the digital dark ages is coming and
there's nothing we can do about it.  I just thought I'd share this
particular daydream for a change.