Convergence: Moving Toward the 'Perfect' Internet

While the truly great minds are considering what the next-generation Internet should be like, I’ll offer a few suggestions and observa-tions. These are not all my own ideas, just a few things I think are important, things I’ve heard mentioned, and some that seem obvious. Some of you might wonder why I’m not discussing 4G wireless or beyond—well, actually I am. My first suggestion (one of the obvious ones) is that wireless and wired networks will be completely intermingled. The perfect Internet will incorporate all methods of delivery. Wireless links will no longer “con-nect you to the Internet,” they will be an integral part of it. It’s not much of a reach, since the present Internet already has multiple pathways, including optical fiber, coaxial cable and point-to-point microwave relay. The next observation is that the operation of the Internet (the part that is invisible to users) will become more complex. However, since we already have operating systems in place for all the pieces. I expect a logical evolu- tion to a more comprehensive scheme.