Out of India

A co-worker sent me this article on the recent loss of interwebbing in those countries that need it most.  Early (and therefore, questionable) reports indicate that entire continent’s internet links may have been severed by a boat anchor killing an undersea cable that could take 2 weeks to repair.  I ask you, a boat anchor?  Is technology really so frail?

Also, this may be something I just don’t get about the interweb and its high-tech structure, but how much impact should one cable between Egypt and Italy really have?  Should that really cut India’s bandwidth in half?  I get the whole idea of communications with certain areas or between certain areas being drastically reduced, but I would think they would have a few more backups or alternatives in place.   I mean, the UAE is worried about the whole thing crippling its ability to do business.  India as well, especially with all the customer service and other backups to businesses here that they provide.  It dosn’t really work without internet, and it could majorly affect international stocks in an interesting way the next few weeks. Not that anyone will be able to take advantage (unless they happen to be in these countries and can like walk to the trading floor).

We recently implemented a backup email system here at work, but what happens when the whole interweb fries up and blows away?  Do they shut down the stock market?  Sorry guys, no trades today!  Really, those Fight Clubbers should’ve just gone out and dredged the ocean floor rather than blowing things up.

My heart goes out to those lonely souls teaching and doing other service work abroad in those countries.  I remember well those days in China, when the interweb beckoned like the vision of some sort of Holy Grail.  Alas, it’s almost as bad as a power outage.  Good luck Judith!  Glad I’m not in Qatar or environs today.

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2 Comments

  1. Alex said,

    January 31, 2008 at 12:43 pm

    If you’d like to learn more about simple ways that complicated things can go wrong, I suggest pretty much any book by Michael Crichton.

  2. Your Boyfriend said,

    January 31, 2008 at 2:50 pm

    I think the US is a bit more protected, since we have more infrastructure than most other countries, and thus more backup systems.

    When you are talking about inter-continental communications, it’s true that there are only a few large cables that travel under the ocean carrying these signals. In fact, if I remember correctly, this sort of thing happened with phone communications between the us and europe once due to a cable snapping from an earthquake or tsunami.

    Technology is very fragile!


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