April 15, 2007
In Fairness to Sen. Ted Stevens
April 15, 2007 05:49 PM
The gentleman from Alaska took a lot of ribbing for his peculiar explanation of why network neutrality was a bad thing, so perhaps some of that mockery should be spread to the Associated Press. A Friday article about proposals to scrap the current internet structure and start over featured the following: "No longer constrained by slow connections and computer processors and high costs for storage, researchers say the time has come to rethink the Internet's underlying architecture, a move that could mean replacing networking equipment and rewriting software on computers to better channel future traffic over the existing pipes." [emphasis added]
"Pipes" has been a colloquial term to discuss Internet connections for years. I don't know how far back it goes, but I've been doing some systems and network administration for the last 12 years. It extends back at least far enough for me to have learned it when I first started managing my employers' Internet connections.
That said, my techie friends have been relatively unwilling to cut Stevens a little slack for talking about "tubes," which struck me as unfair. Regardless, they'll happily go along and talk about having "fat pipes." And I'm pretty sure they aren't talking about what they're carrying below their waists.