£7.2m per second
The UK government says it hopes to "make the internet 100 times faster" by kicking off a £7.2m research project dubbed "Photonics HyperHighway". David Willetts, minister for universities and science, announced the scheme during a speech at Southampton uni earlier today. “The internet is fundamental to our lives and we use it …
Dear Mr Willetts,
Could you please turn your attention next to getting gas to this area? It has been available for over a century in some places, they tell me. It might get you no publicity but is sure to be a vote winner. Desparate times and desparate coaltions call for desparate measures, old chap.
Yours in hope.
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Plastic Cup. Economy. x 60000000 £6800000.00
1 mile String. x 4000 £400000.00
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You plug the string in their ears , cups any size D or whatever total waste of money in the wrong place. Or with WiFi you only need a 6" piece ( Ho Ho ) at each end to make it work. Although you cannot rub the string piece to hard or the receiver person looses controlhttp://www.theregister.co.uk/Design/graphics/icons/comment/pint_32.png
I'm assuming that since our core routers run at 40Gb, and the upgrades are already planned to take that to 100Gb that this extra is to take us to 10Tb
However since there must already be work in progress that increases the 100Gb, then this new research must go even higher :)
After all just giving everyone 100x 100Mb won't help because the 100Gb tubes will already be full.
Forgive me if I am being cynical but I've heard it all before - all leading to absolutely nothing (99% of the time), a squandering of of tax-payers' money (the £13billion NHS CRS debacle) or if we really do something that is actually innovative (computer technology), it will simply get nicked by the Americans.
Politicians would be far more credible if they actually delivered. Just fulfilling the promise to roll-out super fast broadband to every home in the UK would be a start. Never mind a "hyperhighway", we haven't got to the "superhighway" yet. Not even a plain "highway" in certain parts.
The principal investigator on the grant (David Payne) has a world-leading track record in photonics, having been behind the development of the <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Optical_amplifier">erbium-doped fibre amplifier</a> (look at the references at the bottom of that Wikipedia article). Without optical amplifiers, undersea cables would be more expensive and less reliable, so his contribution to the basic technology that underpins the global telecommunications network (including the Internet) is substantial.
Call this a squandering of taxpayers' money if you want, but this is the sort of investment in basic R&D that's essential to the future economic wellbeing of the UK.
(declaration: I'm a lecturer in the same department as Payne, but not one of his direct colleagues)
...better than 2Mbps ADSL that doesn't drop the connection at random times of day and night.
And how is all this airy-fairy photonics stuff going to help me reach the vast majority of the sites I use, which are outside the UK?
And how do I go about getting a government that knows its arse from its elbow?
For only 7million quid they are planning to reinvent the optical, fibre, the nature of light, develop photonics routers and develop new materials with 100x the throughput - at least thats what their grant application claims.
Most likely given the pedigree of the team they have industry funding to an University internal grant an there own pot of money to, which could double or triple the pot of money they have available of the length of the research project.
An us Brits always get stuff done cheaply anyway an usually still better than anyone else, so I would not be entirely surprise if they achieve all there goals.
Commercialisation of new technologies is often the expensive bit an the part which the UK is terrible at an has been for a long time.
Not there job, the protocol has be written, coded up , agreed upon by everyone but no likes spending money so industry never brother implementing it, which is why there will be a mad rush over the next couple of years as the current addresses run out.
If it any fault it Government they should of force companies upgrade there equipement years ago.
Hardware vendors have only just launch IPV6, But I am sure they will jack up there prices once the crisis hit an we ran out of addresses. I am pretty sure some Hardware CEOs will be laughing all the way to the bank.
"Photonics Hyper Highway". Said real fast by my dog is amusing. Emphasis on Hyper as imaginary things flying through the air courtesy of boffins , 100 x the speed of a tortoise does not make it a Ferrari no mater how many labels they put on it. These Bozos don't even know the difference between a bit and a byte ( 8 x bits ) and their literature shows it. How fast do you want it madam ? - get outa here. We are using ESP in Yankee land courtesy of our Pres so therehttp://www.theregister.co.uk/Design/graphics/icons/comment/boffin_32.png
... that was installed at the height of the .com boom and subsequently went dark as prospective ISPs went bust? I thought that at least in the speculative economies of the west there was a good chance we have more fibre capacity than we're likely to need for some considerable time - if only someone can remember where the ends are...
The problem surely is not the backbone, in the 1990s phone companies all over the world laid fiber optic to every telephone exchange. I doubt they put less than 100 fibers per connection there.
Now 10 gigabits per second per Wavelength is nothing new any more. You can have about 100 wavelengths per fibre, giving you a terabit per second per Fibre, or 100 terabits per second per connection. Considering the exchange serves roughly 10000 people, each one of those still gets a _minimum_ of 10 gigabits per second, usually much more.
The big problem is the connection to the user. Telephone wires or cable television cables just don't have the bandwidth required for that. One would most likely have to upgrade the last mile to fibre. Perhaps another solution would be something similar like nano-BTSes on UMTS, only supplying a few people with fibre, and using MIMO technologies to service the rest. Of course nobody in their right mind would want to pay for something like that.
Reading it form several other sources, including the official site and the name itself suggest that all they're proposing is to bring optical technology into the hardware like the router and switches.
Which I'm pretty sure private companies have already started this area of research as the close to market LightPeak already shows.
Basically it still relies on Fibre Optics cable unless they're saying they can solve FTL travel, so in the end, bandwidth is still limited by the cables, they're just making sure it's more effectively utilised.
7.2 mil grant won't really make any difference except the people who's getting this grant, if they can successfully beat the Americans in patenting the technology, would make them billionaires using tax payers money, if not, they got a few years worth of living expense.
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