So on Thursday, January 23, 2014, apparently the Great Firewall of China collapsed, and all the Internet traffic of the nation was sent to a single IP address in Cheyenne WY, which of course failed immediately - the most colossal failure of the Internet to date. It was down for 8 hours.
The very next day, Gmail, the email program of Google, arguably one of the most technologically sophisticated companies in the world, again, simply failed, although it was repaired far more quickly.
Explanations for both are pretty lame. Yeah, the Firewall made a routing error. Oops, there was a little software bug.
That seems like quite a coincidence. It looks more like a hackfest to me.
Welcome, all, to the new era of vulnerability. Our entire communications network, and all the business conducted on it, is held together by means of physical, and virtual connections far beyond my understanding or ability to secure. And when somebody messes with it, it's hard to know just who, or why.
These days, I'm the director of the American Library Association' s Office for Intellectual Freedom. I'm also executive director and secretary of the Freedom to Read Foundation.
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jlarue [at] ala [dot] org.
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jlarue [at] jlarue [dot] com.
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