Pearl of Qatar: creating a "digital" island by Neil Stevenson

    Classic cyberpunk Neil Stevenson has thrown more than one good idea for our gray world. Until now, the most successful of his fantasies was the Second Life game, which Linden Labs had precisely designed for the Avalanche story .

    Now, the wealthy Middle Eastern state of Qatar claims to be the most amazing implementation. The emirate’s authorities began to build the man-made island of Pearl-Qatar near their shores in the Persian Gulf(Pearl of Qatar) with an area of ​​4 million square meters. m. The island should become a real digital paradise for 40 thousand of its inhabitants in ten towns. Qatar’s pearl will be connected to the Network via fiber optic, and all 15 thousand houses on the island will be connected via broadband communication channels and literally packed with modern technological devices, including smart elevators, invisible security systems, tracking devices on RFID radio chips, automatic transport systems, etc. .d.

    Qatar is the third (after Russia and Iran) in the world exporter of natural gas and a large exporter of oil and oil products. And although at the moment the whole country is connected through one provider through NAT and all citizens have one IP address, their huge gold reserves and the desire for scientific and technological progress create all the conditions for the construction of this Crypt, which is described in detail in the cult novel by Neil Stevenson "Cryptonomicon."

    Here are some analogies and differences between the Pearl of Qatar and Crypta, although geographically the latter is far from Qatar, namely, near the Philippines.

    Crypt is an island independent of no government in the world, roughly the same size as the territory of Qatar.

    Crypta has become a cryptographic certification center for the global global digital payment system (WebMoney is a very accurate analogue). Unlike the Russian “offshore refuge” for the WebMoney cryptographic center, the reliability of the Crypta payment system was guaranteed both politically and technologically. The network was connected, including to the largest backbones through the Philippines and nearby Taiwan:“The coastal stretch of cable stretches into a new reinforced concrete building a hundred meters from the upper tidal line. Actually, this is one large room full of batteries, generators, air conditioners and electronic equipment. The other end of the cable goes to where the buoy sways in the South China Sea. There are several kilometers to it. The buoy marks the end of the North Luzon Cable owned by FiliTel. If you move along it, you will find yourself in a building on the northern tip of the island, where a large cable from Taiwan fits. In turn, a whole submarine cable network converges to Taiwan. Transferring data to and from Taiwan is simple and cheap .

    Of course, on the Pearl of Qatar there is no rock in which it would be absolutely safe to place the largest router in the world, as for Crypts.

    Crypta's political credibility was guaranteed by the Kinakuta Sultanate, an independent state that was created on the island and lived off oil revenues. The political structure of the sultanate is similar to the emirate of Qatar. The population of the sultanate is Muslims and ethnic Chinese around the edges, animists in the central part. The island is rich.

    The financial reliability of the Crypts was guaranteed by the tons of gold that fell to the creators of the payment system in the form of a gold reserve of the Third Reich. This is an analogue of the excess revenues of the world's third largest gas supplier and Qatar, a major oil supplier.

    You can end with a quote from the Sultan of Kinakuta. This is the most important, because it is precisely such thinking that the Qatar authorities need in order to fully realize the idea of ​​the great Neil Stephenson.

    Many Internet users are convinced that the Internet is reliable, because communication lines stretch across the planet. In fact, almost all intercontinental traffic goes through a small number of bottlenecks. They are usually controlled and monitored by the local government. Obviously, any Internet venture that needs freedom from government interference is initially doomed due to fundamental structural flaws.

    Clips are just one of the structural barriers to creating a free, sovereign cyberspace that is independent of geography.

    Another obstacle is the proliferation of laws and even legislative systems in the field of non-interference in private life, freedom of speech and telecommunications.

    Each legislative system is composed of amendments introduced over the centuries by the judiciary and the legislature. With all due respect, they do not meet the modern requirements of confidentiality.

    Legislation in the field of freedom of speech, telecommunications and cryptography is the result of a series of simple, rational decisions. However, today they are so complex that no one is able to understand them even within the same country, not to mention the whole world.

    Time to start from the beginning. This is very difficult in a large country where lawmakers compose laws and interpret courts where the tail of historical precedents stretches for them. However, here is the Kinakuta Sultanate. I am the Sultan and I say that the law here will be extremely simple: complete freedom of information. I give up all administrative power over information flows within the country and across its borders. Under no circumstances will the government poke its nose into information flows or use its power to restrict these flows. This is the new Kinakuta law. I invite you, gentlemen, to use it. Thanks.

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