Internet problems of the future. What awaits us?

    It is more and more obvious that the Internet will become in the history of mankind the same fateful phenomenon as a printing press. In 1450, ten years after Johannes Gutenberg invented the printing press, even the most discerning observers were unlikely to begin to grasp what changes this machine would entail. Over time, the printing press made possible the widespread dissemination of nationalism, as communities of people speaking the same language were able to communicate among themselves independently, in a common language, which became the basis for a sense of community. The printing press pulled information from the tenacious arms of churches and kings, allowing people to read the Bible on their own - and sharply reject its readings, which the authorities used to strengthen their power. Communication technologies are fundamentally modifying our brain, turning us into a different biological species.

    The neurophysiologist Susan Greenfield says that the culture of information technology redraws the structure of our central nervous system, shortens the time that we are able to focus, and depletes our imagination. Suppose we have access to the Alexandria Library, but we are not viewing anything but a sitemap and pictures. Such, sometimes I fear, a poisonous spider living in the Ubiquitously Stretched Web.

    An experiment was recently conducted: children from Michigan were provided with computers that they could put in their bedrooms, agreeing in return for scientists to track how these machines were used. It turned out that the more time children spent on the Internet, the better their reading and assessment skills at school. (Watching TV shows has the opposite effect - the more children watch TV, the worse they read and learn). However, on average, the time spent reading books decreases — people prefer the Internet. Thus, if you read something on the Internet - mostly, of course, nonsense - then it is easier for you to read paper books, but at the same time you less want to read them. Go figure it out, plus or minus ...

    Stratification of society

    An almost unnoticed threat loomed over the future of the Internet. After a few years, the Internet can stop due to the huge number of users who want to watch videos online. The rapidly growing number of visitors to sites such as YouTube and the iPlayer BBC leads to a sharp increase in the load on communication channels. Experts warn that if billions of dollars are not spent on upgrading the network infrastructure in the near future, Internet speed could seriously slow down and a network collapse would turn into a disaster for the economy, writes The Daily Telegraph.

    Larry Irving, co-chair of the American industrial group Alliance of Internet Innovations, lobbying for the advancement of the Internet, says: “The streets of major cities such as New York or London are designed for a certain traffic flow. At certain times, you can drive quite freely, and sometimes you get stuck in traffic. London does not stop, but the process of movement is greatly slowed down. Roughly the same thing is happening with the Internet. ”

    According to Irving, Internet communication channels were originally designed only for the transmission of audio information. Transferring video files can cause serious overload. The expert claims that Internet traffic in the USA is increasing by 50% annually, while the possibility of growth is limited to 40%. Britain is experiencing the same problems.

    Over the past year in Britain, the demand for video hosting has skyrocketed. Hitwise, an Internet traffic monitoring company, has registered a 178% increase in visitors to such sites. Last year, the traffic volume of only one YouTube site equaled the traffic volume sent by users of the entire Internet in 2000.

    Large corporations that provide broadband access services own the material "highways" of the Internet: wires, circuits and switches that go through the pages of sites before downloading to your computer. These corporations are lobbying in the US and Europe for the idea of ​​being allowed to turn these highways into a two-lane freeway, where access speed will be determined by the amount you pay.

    If their offer is accepted, the situation will be like this: large corporations such as Nike and Microsoft will pay the highest tariff and distribute their information in the high-speed band - users will see their pages instantly. If you are just an unknown blogger - make a standard payment and get stuck in traffic jams - updating or viewing your page will take much more time. This is called a "tiered" Internet. His appearance cannot be allowed. The Internet is so beautiful that access to it is so cheap: we all connect and have fun on an equal footing. Under the new model, we will no longer compete with each other in a fairly open market for ideas; on the contrary, all disputes will be even more biased in favor of the rich.

    In a situation where the Internet is fundamentally redoing our minds and souls - how exactly, we are just beginning to understand - we must fight for equal access to it for everyone. Otherwise, in the World of Tomorrow everyone will be run by corporations, and inequality will be built right into the cables that bind us all together.

    Many years have passed since the invention of the Internet. Can we now catch the changes that he brings with him? Just like a printing press allowed national communities to unite, the Internet allows multinational groups of people to perceive themselves as a single organism. It is strange that the first group that properly realized this ultramodern potential turned out to be those who yearn for the harsh morality that reigned in the deserts in the 7th century - radical Islamists.

    Indonesia blocked access to YouTube and MySpace due to Fitna

    In the information war, the Internet has become the most accessible and effective battlefield. Every day on the network there are videos of extreme content. This has become a serious threat to society; ethnic and religious conflicts are exacerbating. National governments are beginning to hinder the spread of extremism on the web. But what methods?

    Indonesia blocked the access of its Internet users to the YouTube site, MySpace suffered the same fate. The reason for the ban is posting videos of an anti-Islamic nature, CNN reports.

    We are talking about the Dutch film Fitna (Troubles), filmed by ultra-right politician Heert Wilders. The 17-minute film, posted since March 27 on the Internet, demonstrates, in particular, documentary footage of the attacks of September 2001 in New York and shows the victims of the attacks.

    These frames are accompanied by quotes from the Muslim holy book with translation into English and Dutch. At the same time, phrases from the Qur'an are cited that contain calls “to burn the infidels in the fire, to chop off their heads”. At the same time, the film demonstrates the speeches of leaders of extremist organizations stating that Islam must dominate the world.

    And how are things with us?

    Vice-Speaker of the Federation Council Alexander Torshin proposed the development of common criteria on the basis of which extremist websites can be considered terrorist. It is reported by ITAR-TASS.

    The senator, who heads the temporary commissions of the Federation Council to investigate the terrorist attack in Beslan and on the situation in the North Caucasus, also considers it necessary to formulate methods for identifying such sites and for international and national monitoring of their activities. These measures "will create a mechanism for closing such sites," Torshin told reporters.
    The Vice-Speaker emphasized the need for “urgent measures to counter terrorism and information and propaganda anti-terrorism measures”.

    According to Torshin, 59 non-governmental organizations supporting Chechen separatists and terrorists are operating abroad, and up to a hundred anti-Russian propaganda campaigns are held annually in Europe. The senator noted that “even official structures in a number of Western countries use the information received from such actions to assess the situation in the regions of the Russian Federation or even use them as an excuse for further propaganda actions.”

    The information space is an “arena of confrontation of ideologies and a very powerful weapon, so that unlimited freedom of dissemination of information can be equated to the free trade in weapons or potent hazardous substances,” Torshin said.
    He believes that the role of the Internet as a "means of propaganda of terror" is growing. So, according to him, “10 years ago, terrorist organizations supported only 12 sites, and now, according to some estimates, from 5 to 6 thousand, including about 150 Russian-speaking ones.”

    However, “the Internet is still not officially recognized by us as a mass media and does not fall under the law on mass media and, accordingly, the restrictions imposed on them,” and therefore it is necessary to develop a set of measures at the legislative level aimed at countering terrorism in information, Torshin is convinced .

    Under the hood

    According to Sir Tim Berners-Lee , the man who is considered to be the inventor of the world wide web, the Internet will be very different from today's virtual space. Berners-Lee sees the Internet where all information, applications and data are inextricably linked by links and intertwined - everything will work together with everything else and in practice will allow us to live almost without getting out of the Internet.

    IT professionals call this the " semantic network ." At the moment, search engines such as Google are focusing on links and links between sites, rather than analyzing the specific information that these sites contain. The semantic network, by contrast, will focus on the meaning of the information on the page.

    Computers will “grasp” the context of information, be able to identify and evaluate complex relationships between people, geographical locations and information, and summarize all this to provide valuable search results and generally facilitate online work.
    “The semantic network is not a separate network, but a continuation of the current one,” Berners-Lee said. “Information takes on a clearly defined meaning, which helps computers and people work together better.”

    In connection with this, I want to remind you of very recent newsabout emerging cooperation between Google and the US FBI: “A popular Google search engine has been recruited by US intelligence agencies. According to The Times, structures such as the National Security Agency purchased servers that use Google’s search technology to process information gathered through an agent network around the world. ”

    Also popular now: