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Re: <nettime> Lori Emerson: What's Wrong With the Internet and How
John Hopkins on Tue, 28 Jul 2015 19:28:27 +0200 (CEST)


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Re: <nettime> Lori Emerson: What's Wrong With the Internet and How


On 28/Jul/15 02:56, Iain Boal wrote:

So there was a purely political decision to build in the asymmetries.
Can you corroborate, beyond the mere assertion? Who? When? Evidence
welcome.  IB

Good question -- I don't think there is such a thing as 'purely political' decisions -- that would suggest that causation for techno-social change arises and is implemented without relation to actual resource constraints. (Nothing is purely political, eh?)

I am no expert in this question, but in principle, when the task of engineering a solution is in progress, there is a finite number of assumptions, and variables that one is able to consider -- the solution is never perfect. It can approach perfection but that approach would generally behave asymptotically, based on the ever-increasing consumption of resources necessary to more and more accurately model the reality that the solution is embedded within and that is impressing itself on the solution.

A systems approach -- which was, if nothing else, the widest approach of the social organization (the US military-industrial complex) that was spawning these solutions (networked communications) -- if not a more close structured approach for the particular development project (solution).

No systems-based solutions are perfect. And it's easy to look back and conjecture about where precisely the imperfection arose -- from intent, from lack of time/funding/resources to further optimize solutions, from lack of understanding of ultimate use of the protocols, etc. And I'm not sure of the point in spending time in trying to suss out particular details aside from that process throwing light onto more general flaws in wider processes -- there are thousands of technological implementations that drive our lives in one way or another -- perhaps it's better to understand some principles as to the social dynamic of how those 'protocols' arise and control us than to reverse-engineer each particular protocol and determine its genesis.

I would suggest that one piece of evidence that would support MorlockElloi's assertion would be to see where the developer(s) studied! (MIT?, likely).

The Internet *is* it's lowest protocol layers. The ideology and
politics are embedded in protocols, and attempts to 'solve' the problem
without addressing these fundamental issues are doomed to fail.

I would totally agree with this, and it's possible to drill 'deeper' into protocorollary layers of a technology below what is traditionally held as protocol -- into the protocols of systems theory, into the military itself (the 'protocols' of Sun Tzu!)...

etc...

JH


--
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Dr. John Hopkins, BSc, MFA, PhD
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