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Interview with Sun's Tim Bray and Radia Perlman 76

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the thats-a-bit-old-school dept.
ReadWriteWeb writes "To celebrate the 15th anniversary of the World Wide Web, Richard MacManus interviewed two senior engineers from Sun Microsystems - Tim Bray (Director of Web Technologies) and Radia Perlman (Distinguished Engineer). The interview discusses the past and future of the Web, including the impact that Sun's servers have had over the years. Also discussed is the reason why Tim and Radia believe that P2P won't be a driving force on the Web going forward. Radia thinks that having central sites where people can register is key to making the Web scalable and more secure."
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Interview with Sun's Tim Bray and Radia Perlman

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  • P2P (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Rob T Firefly (844560) on Wednesday August 09, 2006 @11:20AM (#15874041) Homepage Journal
    Tim and Radia believe that P2P won't be a driving force on the Web going forward. Radia thinks that having central sites where people can register is key to making the Web scalable and more secure.
    I'll say. Nothing feels more scalable and secure than when I register and login to all my favorite P2P trackers.
  • Re:P2P (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Aladrin (926209) on Wednesday August 09, 2006 @11:50AM (#15874309)
    You've forgotten 1 very very important thing:

    People like it.

    All the technical reasons in the world don't matter if people prefer it to everything else. Until you have actually created and properly hyped a better 'technology', then P2P is here to stay.
  • by buffoverflow (623685) on Wednesday August 09, 2006 @11:53AM (#15874336)
    This was a disappointment. I was really hoping for a lot more out of this interview. Two brilliant interviewees, (one of which is arguably the most influential and groundbreaking female engineer to ever work in this industry, the other is the creator of one of the most prevalent markup languages used); an interesting topic, (I'd like to know what these two think of the past 15 years, and more importantly, what they see to come); finally a simpering imp of an interviewer.
    Let the two with the IQ's & overly impressive resumes do the talking. MacManus, I'm really hoping you're leaving all the good stuff for part 2. I didn't see much in the way of a single worthwhile question or topic. The writing was dry and elementary.
    Mr. MacManus.. When you get people of this caliber to speak to you, don't treat it like a freshman project for the campus paper. Please do something before you release part 2... Or just toss that page into the fire before you embarrass yourself any more.

    (P.S. It never hurts to plug your interviewees work either... "Interconnections" kicks ass...)
  • Re:P2P (Score:5, Insightful)

    by morgan_greywolf (835522) on Wednesday August 09, 2006 @12:08PM (#15874461) Homepage Journal
    P2P is a dead technology, plain and simple. It can't work in a secure network, for several reasons.


    Who said anything about the Internet being a secure network?

    Look, the Internet, by its very nature, is inherently insecure. It cannot be secure. Only networks where resources can be controlled and managed can be considered secure. You can only secure your own private network, and if that network is connected to the Internet, even via a firewall, its security must be considered at least compromiseable, if not already compromised (this depends on how important security is to your network -- U.S. military and civillian intellegence consider air gap security to be the only security that is acceptable in relation to the Internet and their classified systems). P2P or no P2P.

    As for holes in the firewall -- any service your network provides to the public internet requires holes in your firewall. If you don't like that, then don't run services on your public facing connections. *shrug*

  • by bsartist (550317) on Wednesday August 09, 2006 @12:40PM (#15874686) Homepage
    Two brilliant interviewees, (one of which is arguably the most influential and groundbreaking female engineer to ever work in this industry
    I have to disagree. No disrespect to Ms. Perlman intended, but I think the term "groundbreaking" more accurately describes the work of Admiral Grace Hopper [wikipedia.org]. I will give you however, that Ms. Perlman is arguably the most influential and groundbreaking female engineer currently working in this industry.
  • Layers is the key (Score:2, Insightful)

    by presidenteloco (659168) on Wednesday August 09, 2006 @12:59PM (#15874838)
    Google is based on a network of x-number (say 500,000) of low-grade server pcs.
    They layer on a highly redundant, fault tolerant, hot-computer-swappable,
    massively distributed file system.

    This is a much smarter solution for reliability than centralization. Further
    decentralization (even across corporate boundaries) would lead to even less risk of
    information loss.

    Consider that one single corporation, even with massive decentralization, is still
    vulnerable to a single legal attack by a single misguided corporation or government.

    A distributed, encrypted, cache-migrating filesystem layer on top of millions of
    anonymous peer computers would be even more secure and reliable.

    The fact that 1 expensive Sun computer can be replaced by 2 or 3 (or 10 or 20)
    commodity pcs networked together is what is causing the death of Sun.
    And make no mistake; unless Sun reinvents its business model to FULLY recognize the
    power of commodity-computing and decentralization, it WILL complete its long death
    spiral, or live out a weak, pathetic old age selling replacement Sun "mainframes" to
    technically locked-in fortune 500 customers.

    Note: You can re-introduce a layer that creates virtual "centralization" and "registration"
    on top of a fully decentralized, encrypted, and migrating filesystem layer, if you need
    to. Google already does this. So the argument made in the article is specious.

       

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