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Intel The Internet

Intel says Internet needs to change 228

Nurgled writes "At a recent Intel conference, CTO Pat Gelsinger said that something needs to be done to avoid the Internet buckling under the strain of new technologies and millions of new users. The BBC reports that Intel is attempting to layer a 'new Internet' over the existing network which can detect and counteract things like worm outbreaks and route traffic more intelligently during low and high traffic periods. Intel's prototype, PlanetLab, has 441 nodes but claims to be an open platform with documentation available on the site. What's in it for Intel, though?"
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Intel says Internet needs to change

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  • Agreed (Score:5, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday September 11, 2004 @11:39AM (#10220811)
    The internet could use some change, I just got another "Nothing to see here, please move along." message.
    • Re:Agreed (Score:5, Insightful)

      by saden1 ( 581102 ) on Saturday September 11, 2004 @11:51AM (#10220898)
      what's in it for Intel?

      Serious do-las I imagine. The question is can they do that and will companies like Cisco play along.
    • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday September 11, 2004 @12:13PM (#10221013)
      What do you expect? Their stock is stuck in a rut and their products have become commoditized and China Inc., begins to play on their court.

      They need something that looks like a new huge market to try to stem the bleeding and loss in investor confidence.

      Its unlikely that the likes of Cisco and Juniper and Huwei are simply going to stand still anytime soon. Indeed Cisco just indicated that they will attempt to double their product offerings and rate of introduction of new products over the next 5 years. Juniper continues to move forward on the high end and Huwei is busy outpricing everyone worldwide on the low end and begining to ramp up into higher end products. The PC market is stalled as our president has successfully diverted much IT spending toward paying for higher energy and borrowing costs.

      Current investments in existing infrastructure including the steamroller of lobbyists behind the new internet 2 roll out are out of Intel's control. The core of their business model is now under attack by AMD and its Opteron, so announcements like this are critical for them to keep their heads above water.

      The real issue here is whether they can win any of the super-scret contracts to route and anlyze all internet traffic through the new NSA mainframe filters that are straining to keep up with the explosion of foreign and domestic internet use or whether they can win any of the contracts larger corporations are now issuing to keep track of everyones internet device and VOIP use on a 24/7 basis. Now that is where the real new growth in the market is not on selling to the few folks who still have a little money to spend on IT.

    • Re:Agreed (Score:5, Funny)

      by mog007 ( 677810 ) <Mog007@g[ ] ['mai' in gap]> on Saturday September 11, 2004 @12:26PM (#10221081)
      Of course Intel wants the internet to change, all the benchmarks that're published show AMD whipping their ass!

      HA! was funnier when it was in my head, honest.
    • Re:Agreed (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Simonetta ( 207550 ) on Saturday September 11, 2004 @12:31PM (#10221109)
      The Internet needs to change, yes. The people who have the technological understanding of how the Internet works need to make a systematic and concerted effort to CRUSH the spammers. The spammers are a cancer that is destroying the web by absorbing all of its bandwidth. Even if that were not so due to some massive increase in capacity, they still need to be crushed because they are polluting the web environment with unwanted commercial messages.
      In other media, advertisments are tolerated because they pay the cost of the development of the content and the fixed cost of delivering the content to the audience (primarily the TV and radio broadcasting costs, and magazine paper and distribution costs). That is not so with the Internet. They are getting the medium for free and filling it with content specifically oriented to their private financial gain.
      Governments and laws can not and will not stop them due the transnational nature of the medium. It is up to the technological community to stop them, even if the spammers have manipulated the legal structure to make attempts to stop them illegal.
      It is up to the technological community that created the web to set enforced guidelines for its use. No one else has the ability to do it.
      • Re:Agreed (Score:5, Insightful)

        by Anonymous Coward on Saturday September 11, 2004 @01:04PM (#10221303)
        No, there is no need for change and spam is hardly a major problem for the Internet as a whole. It might be frustrating for mail admins, but for the most part it's not seriously threatening the Web, IRC, FTP, SSH, VNC, NNTP and a host of other protocols which may have spam-like activity but also have workarounds. Sure, it's an annoyance everywhere, but a major threat --no way. Even when it comes to e-mail I get hardly any spam just using the defaults on Spam Assasin. So, this does not seem like a major emergency.
        The real story here is Intel is struggling for relevance. You do realize they're planning to run their new dual cores at 200watts? Have you seen the heat sinks that are going on these things? They're enormous. This is a totally irresponsible move at a time when energy resources are at the forefront of the political stage.
        So, no wonder they're looking to scare up some attention elsewhere. But the fact is, the Net is damn fine. The scarry thing is that it's better outside the US than in. If the Net is in such danger then why is it that in Korea, Japan, Taiwan and major cities in China things are so smooth. And yes, as a matter of fact it is both smooth and cheap here. Thank you very much.
        Fix the net? Hah. You'll have to build it and then break it first. Of course in the States it's easy to create the image it's broken, but actually it hasn't hardly started yet.
        • Re:Agreed (Score:4, Insightful)

          by True Grit ( 739797 ) * <> on Saturday September 11, 2004 @06:49PM (#10223217)
          I get hardly any spam just using the defaults on Spam Assasin. So, this does not seem like a major emergency

          Huh? It doesn't matter how good your filter is, the parent is pointing out that a lot of bandwidth on the net is being wasted pushing junk around only to have it automatically deleted at its destination. Fine, its not a problem for you but it is a problem for the Internet.
      • by argent ( 18001 ) <peter.slashdot@2006@taronga@com> on Saturday September 11, 2004 @01:57PM (#10221575) Homepage Journal
        Spam is a social problem, and it has to be solved through social mechanisms. Every time a technological fix to spam has been developed, the spammers have found a way to get around it.

        It doesn't matter that the spammers are transnational, the biggest spammers are all in the US, no matter where their servers are, because it's a rich country with weak privacy laws. For the forseeable future, big spammers are going to want to live in rich countries, and they're going to want to operate from countries where their very databases aren't illegal. If there were US laws that addressed the behaviour that causes the problem without loopholes for 'well behaved' spammers, and these laws were enforced, this WOULD reduce spam from a universal pollution to an annoyance.

        This means: ban unsolicited broadcast email. This means: don't force people to opt out, don't make exceptions for popular spammers (we don't make exceptions that allow charities or political parties to hold regular "tire bonfires" in their parking lots), don't allow "properly labelled" spam, just ban UBE, commercial or not.

        That means, if you're mailing to more than a few people (let's say, 100 copies of a message a week as a limit... that's plenty high enough for any legitimate purpose and far far below what a spammer needs to stay in business) then you better have (a) a verifiable signup record for each person if it's a mailing list, (b) record of an explicit request from each person, if it's a response mailing, or (c) a proof that you have an existing business, professional, or membership relationship that each recipient is in a position to terminate.

        No exceptions.
        • by maxpublic ( 450413 ) on Saturday September 11, 2004 @03:14PM (#10222008) Homepage
          Ah, great. Yet more laws and yet more government interference in the internet. Just what we need.

          Lucky for us the internet is world-wide and the track record for legal control is absolutely abysmal. I'll take spam over EFFECTIVE government control or regulation of the internet any day of the week.

          Spam is the LESSER of two evils here.

      • Re:Agreed (Score:3, Insightful)

        by maxpublic ( 450413 )
        they still need to be crushed because they are polluting the web environment with unwanted commercial messages.

        As if there were such a thing as a WANTED commercial message.

        • Yes, there is. People sign up for mailing lists to get sale info, coupons, or other deals from companies.
        • Re:Agreed (Score:3, Insightful)

          by HeghmoH ( 13204 )
          Some examples of commercial messages I've recently received that I actually want:

          - Messages from my credit card company, saying that I have a new statement, or my payment is due.
          - Messages from a computer company, saying that I may have defective hardware and be eligible for a replacement.
          - Order notices for my products.
          - Various newsletters that I've signed up for.

          Note that any replies of "but I hate X" or "but you can get X in another way, like so" are irrelevant; I like getting these things by e-mail,
  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday September 11, 2004 @11:40AM (#10220817)
    I don't like the idea of Intel owning the internet
    • That's not what it sounded like to me. It sounds like they will own a piece of the infrastructure. Other people will own other pieces. Sure they will make some money (hopefully) off of their piece, but so will the other owners. They will not "own the internet."

      As to the original article, "What's in it for Intel?" Maybe they have an interest in people using their computers more because they sell... computer chips? (Not to mention that the market for high-end servers is very lucrative.)
    • I don't like the idea of Intel owning the internet

      Don't be afraid, I'm sure Al Gore will protect his baby...

    • by Angostura ( 703910 ) on Saturday September 11, 2004 @02:53PM (#10221884)
      What has this to do with Intel "owning the Internet"? Nada. From what I can tell, this is Intel saying 'hey what you need is application layer analysis of every packet going across the net, at wirespeed in every core router.... what do you mean that will take a lot of processing power?", and then opening it's jacket to reveal ... what?.

      If I was going to make a guess, it would be that Intel was about to launch a new series of network processor, and this is the start of the sales pitch.
  • IPv6? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Cyberax ( 705495 ) on Saturday September 11, 2004 @11:40AM (#10220823)
    Why not just boost adoption of IPv6?
    • Re:IPv6? (Score:3, Insightful)

      by mcovey ( 794220 )
      yes.. isn't that supposed to be the "next internet"? The concept of the internet needs no changes. Free flow of data, internationally regardless of content. If the content is illegal or irritating, then stop it at the door. If you stop it at the source you can also stop legitimate uses for content.
    • Re:IPv6? (Score:4, Insightful)

      by beh ( 4759 ) * on Saturday September 11, 2004 @11:45AM (#10220857)
      IPv6 doesn't address all the issues (e.g. combatting Worm spreading).

      On the other hand - I would second a more rapid adoption of IPv6 any day. Maybe whatever intel feels neccessary to add to the Internet can be introduced at this level instead of trying to add a solution to IPv4 and therefore delaying IPv6 even further (since it will cost resources to adapt v4 and on top of that additional resources to plan this for v6 and re-implement it there as well)...
      • Re:IPv6? (Score:5, Interesting)

        by tchuladdiass ( 174342 ) on Saturday September 11, 2004 @12:04PM (#10220965) Homepage
        Actually, ipv6 can help reduce the spread of worms. Right now, most worms will target random subnets, and all hosts within those subnets. Since the address range if ipv6 is so large it will make it that much harder for a worm to find a target host to infect. And the routers could then be programed to put in a logirithmic delay between connections everytime a host tries to contact a non-existant ip address (i.e., a few bad guesses will have no effect on the connection speed, but when it starts to get into the thousands, the router could slow the connection quite a bit, up to the point of stopping the worm spread).
        • Re:IPv6? (Score:5, Interesting)

          by donscarletti ( 569232 ) on Saturday September 11, 2004 @12:17PM (#10221038)
          You probably don't want a logarithmic delay, logarithmic curves pretty much flatten off as they go along. You would probably want an exponential delay with a very low base (like 1.01 or so) that way it will start off with a very very small delay, but when the errors get big, the delays will get real big, real fast.
          • Re:IPv6? (Score:2, Interesting)

            by Anonymous Coward
            No, logarithmic would be better. It would keep innocent guesses at fairly low delays. Only when there were a substantial number of wrong guesses would the router start introducing longer and longer delays. I think that would probably be sufficient.

            I mean, once you start delaying 1000ms per packet, there ain't gonna be much going on.
        • Re:IPv6? (Score:5, Insightful)

          by duguk ( 589689 ) <dug@frag. c o .uk> on Saturday September 11, 2004 @12:23PM (#10221070) Homepage Journal
          Plus, don't forget that on IPv4, NATs have become compulsary; making some worms unable to contact some 'natted' pcs... IPv6 might mean these machines will be contactable directly....

          Just my £0.0111123, tho I'm not that knowledgable of IPv6 yet... Apart from that nice article the other day. That was good, that was. Probably should read it though.
          • Re:IPv6? (Score:3, Interesting)

            by negative0 ( 96493 )
            Implementing IPv6 does not mean that NAT will go away. We use it for security more than getting a few more ip addresses. NAT *can* be used to share a single ip over multiple machines, but mapping ports and allowing games to work and such is a pain. We use NAT as a 1 to 1 mapping, allowing the internal hosts to be shielded, and our internal topology to be hidden. Also, all the internal equipment (switches, routers, printers) are protected from external access and don't use an external ip. I don't see IPv6 ma
          • Re:IPv6? (Score:3, Insightful)

            by pHDNgell ( 410691 )
            NATs have become compulsary; making some worms unable to contact some 'natted' pcs

            It's not the NAT that stops the traffic, it's the firewall. NAT does not in any way enhance your security.

            Every time anything about IPv6 comes up, someone says something to the effect of, ``but if there's no NAT, how will we secure our boxes!?'' That just makes no sense to me. The fact that a computer has a real IP address does not imply that it can accept connections from any machine on the internet. That's just silly.
    • Re:IPv6? (Score:2, Troll)

      by turgid ( 580780 )
      Because intel didn't invent it?
    • Too lazy to switch (Score:2, Interesting)

      by KB1GHC ( 800065 )
      Because, not everyone is gonna switch to it, no matter how hard we beg, there are probably parts of the internet that haven't been updated in years. The thing to remember is people are lazy, if everything is working OK for them, they don't want to mess with it.
    • Re:IPv6? (Score:2, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward
      "Why not just boost adoption of IPv6?"

      Because it wouldn't require anyone to upgrade CPUs.
    • Re:IPv6? (Score:4, Informative)

      by n.wegner ( 613340 ) on Saturday September 11, 2004 @01:55PM (#10221560)
      None of you guys seem to know what it is, so I'll spread what I know as a 4th-year CSc student taking a course that involves PlanetLab in the first project.

      PlanetLab is like Akamai. Each "node" is a server somewhere on the web. You can write a program and, if PlanetLab approves it, you can submit it to be run on some nodes. The set of nodes you get access to is called a "slice", and each of your sandboxes on a node is called a "sliver". I said it's like Akamai, in that it's distributed and when you run your program you'll be able to load-balance for shortest latency, etc.

      IPv6 is an orthoganal issue, because PlanetLab is just an application-layer thing. Right now we're writing a toy program that does a traceroute from each sliver to a target ip, and that's pretty much the same whether it's IPv4 or IPv6 afaik. Intel and my prof keep hyping it like it's totally new, but bring up Akamai and they admit it's been done before.
  • by rde ( 17364 ) * on Saturday September 11, 2004 @11:40AM (#10220825)
    I dunno; maybe they like using the internet? Intel may be an Evil CorporationTM, but they've got as much interest as anyone else in keeping it going.

    Or maybe - just maybe - they're doing something nice.

    Then again: to quote the article
    " If the net grows to 100 billion devices connected to it, our goal is to have a piece of Intel inside in every one of those hundred billion "
    Pat Gelsinger, Intel

    • by gl4ss ( 559668 ) on Saturday September 11, 2004 @11:46AM (#10220868) Homepage Journal
      it's a no brainer they would like to be central in whatever 'next' big thing is.

      but this doesn't really seem like a solution to the problems they're painting.. "he said building a new network on top of the old".. just somehow I don't think that's really innovative way of handling the the problems(and isn't using isolated vpn's over public internet already something like this? building a network on top of the existing one to fix some problems)..
      • "he said building a new network on top of the old".. just somehow I don't think that's really innovative way of handling the the problems

        They did it with their cpus and it worked so far ;)

        But I agree, that's a bad way to handle problems.
      • imbrace and extend... build a `new Internet' on top of the old... and when a critical mass of folks are using it, make the underlying `old Internet' servers just ignore all traffic that's not related to the `new Internet'. Problem of migration solved. ...then they can optimize their `new Internet' stacks, as to avoid having the old internet as the transport layer, etc.
        • *******. and when a critical mass of folks are using it, make the underlying `old Internet' servers just ignore all traffic that's not related to the `new Internet'. Problem of migration solved. ...then they can optimize their `new Internet' stacks, as to avoid having the old internet as the transport layer, etc******** ..... ipv6?
      • Here's an example of one of those VPN's over public internet:

        the Meta network [] (scroll down on the page to read the intro)
    • Companies aren't in business to do nice things. They are in business to make as much profit as possible.

      However if some 'nice thing' is viewed internally as being a path to more profit, then they'll do it. If it doesn't pay off after a time, it will go away, or be sold.

    • That's why. Every new router, switch and other device on Intel's "Internet 3", replacing all the old hardware, will of course need processors...

      This is the same reason Intel is putting so much research into DARPA's Smart Dust [] concept. Right now Smart Dust is a bunch of engineers geeking around (or to some extent, a solution looking for a problem), but when/if it hits big, and micropower sensors are deployed in the hundreds-thousands-or-millions at a time, they would love to step up to potential manufacture
    • I dunno; maybe they like using the internet? Intel may be an Evil CorporationTM, but they've got as much interest as anyone else in keeping it going.

      Or maybe - just maybe - they're doing something nice.

      Or maybe people have finally realized they don't actually need a 3.2ghz cpu to browse web pages and read email. So Intel have decided to put all that extra power to "good use" by proposing a new abstraction layer over the top of the TCP/IP stack. It's certainly not to lessen the traffic...
  • Applications... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by leonmergen ( 807379 ) * <lmergen&gmail,com> on Saturday September 11, 2004 @11:41AM (#10220826) Homepage
    The problem is, a lot of the internet is dated from way back. You not only see it in 'the internet' and the main protocol being used (tcp/ip, which is, as far as I can see, the thing intel wants to change), but also how some applications talk to each other.

    For example, the SMTP protocol. It was designed WAY back, and only a few people had problems with not being able to verify the sender of an email, but that was being ignored. If someone would want to make such a protocol nowadays, it would contain a HELL lot more security measures. But if you want to change the protocol right now, you will need a pretty big front of important people in order to do that...

    My point is: Intel can say they want to make a new layer on top of the internet, which is all fine, but I think in order to really make a 'better' internet, you need to change the way application communicate with each other too...
    • Re:Applications... (Score:5, Insightful)

      by NutscrapeSucks ( 446616 ) on Saturday September 11, 2004 @11:51AM (#10220896)
      X.400 was also designed WAY back, and it solves every problem people have with SMTP.

      However in order to do this, you need central control (aka the Phone Company), which is exacty what the modern Internet was designed to avoid.

      So, no, you're not going to get a wonderful replacement for SMTP that's spam/virus/fraud proof and still allows you to do things in a decentralized manner (like setup your own mailserver). Any fix people have come up with can easily be applied to SMTP email.

      (If the government wanted to do us a favor, they'd give you a X.509 certificate along with your driver's licence.)
      • > (If the government wanted to do us a favor, they'd give you a X.509 certificate along with your driver's licence.)

        And piss off privacy advocates everywhere?

        Besides, email is a worldwide thing so individual government-based initiatives are bunk.
  • Internet2 (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Dutchie ( 450420 ) on Saturday September 11, 2004 @11:41AM (#10220831) Homepage Journal
    So Intel will reinvent Internet2 [] then?
    • by savagedome ( 742194 ) on Saturday September 11, 2004 @11:51AM (#10220895)
      Nah. They just want to rename it Intelnet.

      However, in Japan, Intelnet would still be called...

      Sorry. Couldn't resist.
    • Re:Internet2 (Score:5, Informative)

      by stevelinton ( 4044 ) <> on Saturday September 11, 2004 @11:54AM (#10220913) Homepage
      Not really. I think what they're actually proposing is a separate "management layer" overlaid on the internet, either on separate fibres or VLANs or .... which would operate rather higher standards for connection (see the rules for connecting University MANs to JANET for an example) than the internet and provide secure and reliable exchange of management information (traffic patterns, for instance) to allow things like prompt detection of worms.

      Makes sense as a way to go from where we are, even if it wouldn't necessarily be what you'd design from here.

      Internet 2 is quite different -- it's a high-capacity backbone combined with a testbed for some new protocols.
  • IPv6 (Score:3, Interesting)

    by comwiz56 ( 447651 ) <comwiz&gmail,com> on Saturday September 11, 2004 @11:43AM (#10220836) Homepage
    Why don't they just support and push the adoption of IPv6 and build it correctly from the ground up vs. changing whats already in place?
  • by Anonymous Coward
    An internet that extends to every device down to your internet-enabled nail clipper. Only thing is, the nail clipper has to have reminders built in, and someone has to write that sophisticated piece of code, and you don't want people ripping off code, so every device needs DRM, and the network needs to support it, in their vision at least. Remember they talk to a lot of potential customers, many of whom are probably telling them "if only you had better DRM, we could buy X million units of Y".

  • Yeah, (Score:5, Funny)

    by Whatthehellever ( 93572 ) on Saturday September 11, 2004 @11:43AM (#10220844) Homepage
    It's called SkyNet.
  • by reporter ( 666905 ) on Saturday September 11, 2004 @11:45AM (#10220862) Homepage
    The article starting this discussion asks, "What's in it for Intel, though?"

    Obvious is the answer: total domination of the next generation of technologies. Intel realizes that microprocessors, the market on which it built its business, is fast becoming a mature industry. Margins will drop as competition between AMD64 and Intel64 heat up. In search of new areas of grow, Intel is branching out into other areas: routers, WI-FI, etc.

    Intel does nothing out of generosity. More than 30% of the company is H-1B workers, and they retain the same ruthlessly competitive attitude that they had in their homelands (e.g. China, India, etc.)

    • From the article:

      'Mr Gelsinger said Intel wanted its hardware to be at the heart of this overlay system. "If the net grows to 100 billion devices connected to it, our goal is to have a piece of Intel inside in every one of those hundred billion," he said.'
    • From the article:
      " If the net grows to 100 billion devices connected to it, our goal is to have a piece of Intel inside in every one of those hundred billion "
      Pat Gelsinger, Intel

      An obvious point.

      As for what they are planning to do about it, it seems they are trying to head in two directions at once. They want majority share in the heart of the beast, and they want each device to sport the "Intel Inside" sticker.
      While software and hardware capable of heading off worms and other malicious attacks would
    • Intel has a massive venture capital arm investing in future technologies. Generally these are investments in industries which will help Intel by driving up demand. For instance, I remember the head of this VC arm being interviewed once, talking about investment in some new WiFi enabled device company creating some new product. Intel invested there under the condition that they use Intel chips.

      I wouldn't be surprised if this is the same kind of thing they're looking forward to doing. Intel may not end up ow
  • Um...Chips... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by boatboy ( 549643 ) on Saturday September 11, 2004 @11:47AM (#10220869) Homepage
    What's in it for Intel is to sell chips to power said 'new internet'. How dare they.
    • And Cisco and a myriad of other hardware vendors will sell more too.

      I think we should exhaust some other avenues first before creating a whole new layer. FreeNet project? [] ... maybe not ... although it does have potential.

  • by KB1GHC ( 800065 ) on Saturday September 11, 2004 @11:50AM (#10220894)
    I like Intel's new concept. Alot of the internet is still running old hardware, you can't just change the internet, because it's impossible to change all the routers/etc at once but if they do it this way, they can just wait for the old internet to deteriorate.

    but does this article have anything to do with "Internet2"? i'm a little confused, because the description sounds like Internet2.
  • by gd23ka ( 324741 ) on Saturday September 11, 2004 @11:52AM (#10220901) Homepage
    ... built a GUI on DOS and called it Windows and that sucked. What the internet needs right now is more and more bandwidth both on the backbone networks, in the near future more bandwidth to individual workstations and maybe in five years from now IPV6. What the Internet does not need is censorship, TCPA/Palladium Digital Rights Management, Taxes, Microsoft and least of all Intel.
    • the Internet doesn't need more bandwidth today. have you heard of the fiber glut? the Internet2 did just that - added more bandwidth. do you know what the result was? neither do they. they couldn't write any applications that took advantage of more bandwidth that were seen as `important' or `innovative'.

      the Internet needs smarter users. the Internet needs less corporate and government hands trying to change it to their desires.

      IPv6 does help. Muticast helps more. Anycast helps as well. Mesh netwo
    • What the internet needs right now is more and more bandwidth both on the backbone networks.

      I disagree. It seems that a lot of bandwidth is being wasted with pr0n and spam, both of which would probably saturate any pipe you cared to use.

      So if you can solve the spam problem, and your ISP can build a massive cache exclusively for pr0n, the backbone bandwidth issues would simply disappear.
    • ... built a GUI on DOS and called it Windows and that sucked.
      Yeah! In fact, it sucked so much that now nobody uses Windows!
  • Perhaps they are loosing money due to the current state of affairs?

    Getting things under control will help reduce wasted costs due to the things they are trying to address.

    Perhaps too, they will sell hardware with this 'open standard' in native silicon.. Make a bit of cash while improving 'service'...

    Just because its a large company doing something doesn't mean its automatically a 'world takeover' attempt...
  • by nate nice ( 672391 ) on Saturday September 11, 2004 @12:01PM (#10220947) Journal
    Intel, by providing free and open standards will showcase themselves as a pioneer willing to make sacrifices to maintain the leadership role their company currently has. Nothing lasts forever and if they think only with greed they will more easily lose their "number one" status.

    In general, you want to keep the field you play on in good shape. You need to take care of your arena so people find value in your products. If the Intel research will make internet use greater for more people, this directly benefits Intel as it will lead to presumably more chip sales in the end.

    If they really get something good going here and fail to keep it open and free, no one will adopt it and they will have just wasted money on research that will not pay off and not have increased chip sales.

    Then again, I could be entirely wrong here and Intel needs to figure out a way to increase their already huge profit margins. This may be the way?

    • by Anonymous Coward
      You're on the right thread.

      The internet as we know it is a collaboration. This entire discussion about Intel owning this planetlab by posters above is kinda funny, shows that they don't read fully, when the links are provided, or even do research before posting.

      PlanetLab is also a collaboration, not just Intel, but also includes acadamics and other corporations such as google and hp. Look at the consortium link to see who is involved at []

      Also, be thankful that corporation
  • Oh no... (Score:2, Interesting)

    by X3J11 ( 791922 )
    It's probably been said already, in one way or another, but you'd think that Intel would have learned by now that taking something and adding just a little bit more to it usually results in more headaches than it's worth. What's the old saying? "Intel puts the backwards in backwards-compatability."

    They need to rebuild Internet. Make it better, faster, stronger. A 6 million dollar Internet!
  • With stuff like CALEA, title 3 and the WOT can you imagine what a disaster we would get if a US corp were to get to redesign the Internet right now.

    No thanks, I'll keep the broken system we have rather than the awful mess that would result.

  • by suso ( 153703 ) on Saturday September 11, 2004 @12:06PM (#10220985) Homepage Journal
    Maybe if they had a track record of creating open standards I could believe that they wouldn't corrupt it, but I don't think this would be a good idea. I doubt it will catch on.
  • by dre23 ( 703594 ) <> on Saturday September 11, 2004 @12:11PM (#10221004)
    Intel seems to think that networks need to get smarter. But networks need to get dumber (i.e. more simple). Systems need to be more like OpenBSD and less like [bloated] Linux or Windows. Applications need to be smaller and more precise.

    As everything becomes more and more embedded, we need to strip functionality that we don't use anymore and build applications to what we do, not what we did five (or ten, or twenty) years ago.

    Open-source has always strived to provide less bloated and overall better quality software. This comes from the Unix mentality. Intel does not yet understand this approach to computing. Intel provided a hardware architecture that rivaled IBM for monolithic and for lack of innovation and growth. This is mostly thanks to Microsoft and the users of Microsoft products.

    We in the open-source world and of the Unix generation have never had severe problems with viruses. We learned from the mistakes of the [original] Internet worm, and we haven't made those same mistakes again. We don't neet smart networks. We need streamlined networks, systems, and applications. Small progams with single purposes: to do one thing well.
    • If we want to stop spam, worms, etc earlier in the network (closer to the point of origin and further away from target sights), than the dumb router has to be replaced with a generalized device that has APIs and can shape traffic based on more than load but also external factors like worm identification etc.

      This would also help caching - caches like Akamai are described in high level detail as being at the edge but you have to peek into the interior of the network to locate your edge cache in the first palc

  • by Danathar ( 267989 ) on Saturday September 11, 2004 @12:12PM (#10221007) Journal
    The Coral Webcache of which there was a recent slashdot story d=04/08/28/2330252&tid=95&tid=218 []
    runs on Planetlab.
  • by WindBourne ( 631190 ) on Saturday September 11, 2004 @12:12PM (#10221010) Journal
    This has nothing to do with "scaling". It has everything to do with re-inventing the technology so that they control. Basically, Intel is not able to take on Cisco directly, so instead will attempt to shift the playing field to their backyard.
    • Smarter programmable nodes at the interior of the network with true APIs, scriptable filtering, etc will go a long way to rapid response to stopping worms and spam as close to the point of origin as possible. Cisco prefers the router to be big, expensive, and stupid...routing as a concept needs a kick in the pants.
  • Misleading article (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday September 11, 2004 @12:14PM (#10221016)
    The article is very misleading. PlanetLab is primarily developed by Princeton University. The claim that the network was "funded by Intel" is a huge exaggeration: Intel has merely donated some of the original servers, which are now only a fraction of the total number of PlanetLab servers.

    You can read a more informative article about the background here: lab.htm []

    Furthermore, I'd like to point out that most of the work on the PlanetLab infrastructure is done by grad students at Princeton University, not by Intel.
  • open means what? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by fermion ( 181285 ) on Saturday September 11, 2004 @12:15PM (#10221026) Homepage Journal
    Just because something is open does not mean there are no strings attached. If this new layer detects malware, there is some process to do this. Even if this process is freely licensed, whoever owns the process will be at a great advantage. If this process is encapsulated in some for profit form, even something that can be added into OSS, then whoever owns the product is going to make a lof of money

    If we are talking about mandatory authentication, then there needs to be some way to securely authenticate. We have optional authentication now, which is good, but too easy to circumvent. Secure authentication requires a protocol and secure hardware and software. Both are right up the Wintel alley, with thier embedded ID chips and closed OS. Again, the protocol could be open and free, but only certified machines are allowed ont he network. Will certification be anything other than a $50 bill slipped to Intel. Maybe not.

  • Buckling? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by jeffkjo1 ( 663413 ) on Saturday September 11, 2004 @12:28PM (#10221086) Homepage
    'Buckling under the strain of new technologies'? What about buckling under software patents?
  • Layer implies on top of. On top of implies overhead. Overhead implies... additional stress.

  • by Todd Knarr ( 15451 ) on Saturday September 11, 2004 @12:35PM (#10221124) Homepage

    I see the major flaw in Intel's idea right there where they say their network would be optimized for web services. Umm, what if web services aren't the big thing in a couple of years? IBM optimized SNA for the kinds of networks they knew were going to be built, but we don't see much SNA outside mainframe data centers. Corporate America doesn't have a very good track record of predicting how things will actually turn out. The Internet's strength is that it isn't optimized or designed for any one application, so while it may not be ideal for any one application it's at least usable for all of them. I'd be wary of changing that.

    As far as worm outbreaks, those don't require fundamental changes in the Internet. Stopping them requires the people responsible, the ordinary users, to get a clue. It doesn't even have to be much of a clue, just something on the level of "Running that red light at a busy intersection might be a bad idea." or "Putting my hand on the red-hot stove burner might hurt.". That's not asking that much. (NB: that wasn't in the nature of a question.)

  • by Zo0ok ( 209803 ) on Saturday September 11, 2004 @12:40PM (#10221152) Homepage
    Of course it is Intel that needs to change. Hardly anyone cares about PC cpu MHz anylonger. The Itanium is such a magnificent failure. PC and server CPUs will soon cost less than $50, and nobody will care about brands anymore.

    What should Intel do? They have to do something that makes the market believe Intel is at least part of the future. Pushing that Internet needs to change seems to be a way to get heard at all.

    Maybe Intel is part of the future - and maybe they will revolutionise Internet. But primarily it Intel that needs to change - not the Internet.
  • What's in it for Intel, though?

    What was in the original Internet for DARPA? Go back in history and see. Sometimes answering a questions with a question is the best way. :)

  • Domination of the net by Intel and its cronies, of course. We all know that the real reason the current Internet succeeded was because it was built on open standards. But the very openness that we love is what makes companies like Intel (and Microsoft, Dell, and Halliburton [aka the US government]) hate it, because they can't lock it down.

    Rest assured their "new" Internet will be full of DRM and other horrors. One might even require a crypto certificate signed by an oligopoly-approved CA in order to con
  • I doubt that Intel is looking out for anyone but Intel. Intel has a good track record of looking out for themselves and no one else. They want to be "in on the ground floor."

  • My opinion is quite simply that today we have different expectations of The Internet and we use it in many different ways than it was initially designed for. There are things that we can do that simply were not possible before simply because technology and computers were not as powerful as they are now.

    I think its sensible to re-evaluate the underlying infrastructure and protocols now to see in what ways it can be made better. However we should be careful not to let one megacorp control the technology.

  • I smell something rotten in Denmark. The techno-team says "architectual limitations", but watch out when the marketing team says "faster safer internet." That's a dangerous idea.

    And watch who piggy-backs that cause.

  • I can't fucking believe how stupid people are. Me and my Apple Powerbook do NOT want the net to change. Microsoft Windows needs to change. The net is fucking fine.

  • by davidwr ( 791652 ) on Saturday September 11, 2004 @01:34PM (#10221449) Homepage Journal
    It's a bit off-topic, but if you want to help quash viruses and the like, incorporate a basic ip4/ip6 firewall in NIC chipsets.

    Home-user PC manufacturers could set to to
    "block all unrequested inbound traffic and block all outbound traffic except:
    web, ftp, ssh, dns, bootp, tftp, dhcp" and maybe a few others, and provide a web interface where the 1st question after "please enter password" is "who is your email provider" to open up email ONLY to that location. Better yet, if the email provider isn't configured, beep during POST and give the user an opportunity to enter the NIC-bios-setup screen to set it.

    Of course, it would need to be at least as configurable as the firewalls built into most "home routers."

    The technology to do this is already there, and you can argue it's already been done given that a PC with a network-interface and a software firewall amounts to the same thing, and it's "obvious" that such a system can be burned to firmware. As such, any patents would be narrow and probably serve only to prevent cloning of a specific chipset.

    Anyone working on any of the []open -source BIOS projects is welcome to take these ideas and run with them. Granted, if it's in the system BIOS rather than the NIC BIOS it may only work with 1 NIC and as such, be only a proof of concept.
  • Redundant (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Glendale2x ( 210533 ) <slashdot AT ninjamonkey DOT us> on Saturday September 11, 2004 @01:42PM (#10221499) Homepage
    "Hey, I know how to fix the internet!"
    "Build a new internet on top of the old one!"

    The internet doesn't need fixing, it seems to run just fine. What it does need are less people running virus magnets and creating all kinds of problems. The lack of security is *not* the internet's fault; it already does what it needs to do. Security should not be the job of the transport. The job of the transport is to transport stuff, be it unencrypted data or the next generation of uber-encrypted VPN for those who want security. (This is my gripe with all these "wireless security" methods. Just build a damn base station with a built in VPN server and be done with it. But then they couldn't introduce "new and improved security" every other month and sell more stuff.)

    Got virus problems? It's not the internet's falut, nor its responsibility. The responsibility for that should be on the client side. I see attempted windows exploits coming to my network all the time: in my denied connections for my firewall. Packets dropped, no harm done. Same with my Apache logs. I scan my incoming and outgoing email for viruses, firewall everything, and make those in my family who use Windows aware of issues like don't click on random shit in your email you know nothing about. And guess what? Everything works smoothly and plays nice.

    The idea is nothing more than buzz to create some interest from people who have money in the hope that they'll part with their money. "Look what we can do, we can fix the internet! Now, we'll just need you to write a check for..." Besides, how long will it be before an internet tunneled over an internet gets overloaded? Then what? Tunnel another internet over the internet tunneled over the internet? If you want a new, faster, better network, you gotta build one from the ground up.
  • by bethenco ( 578272 ) <bethenco@upl.cs.wis c . edu> on Saturday September 11, 2004 @02:09PM (#10221639) Homepage Journal
    PlanetLab is not "Intel's prototype". Intel did not start the project,
    and has never been in control of it. PlanetLab is primarily an
    academic project that receives funding from a number of corporations,
    including HP, Google, AT&T, France Telecom, and Intel.

    The steering committee consists of faculty members from four
    universities along with one representative from HP and one from Intel.
    The research staff is composed mainly of people from Princeton along
    with at least one from Berkeley.
  • So Intel wants to become the Microsoft of the internet?

  • "What's in it for Intel, though?"

    More internet bandwidth means more things to do with a pc, and therefore, more reasons to buy a pc.

Nondeterminism means never having to say you are wrong.