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Well users loose for now
The Well has two IP feeds into the internet, due to
political/biz_profit/sysadmin problems the two feeds do NOT back each
other up, and the one that can be seen from toad.com has been down for
a few days, thus blocking your email.
If the feed comes up today, well.com based subscribers to
cypherpunks should get all of the list traffic in one big burst, if it
stays down much longer then the toad.com mailer will start trashing
the older mail (and bug us about each lost message).
This points to an interesting problem, TCP/IP is very good at
getting data from point A to point B, so good that a month of bombing
by the Department of War does not destroy network conductivity. Yet
here in the (so very rich) USA we have lots lots of outages to parts
of the net because TCP/IP does not solve the problem of PAYING for
getting packets where they belong.
This is a protocol issue on two levels, the first is that the idea
of accounting for packets/bandwidth/capacity (in some unknown manner)
was left out of TCP/IP in the first place. The second is that it is
going to be a very large amount of work to replace the current plant
of TCP/IP hardware and software as none of these protocols are
negotiated, just presumed to be the only way to do things.
If we build systems like these, then they will be 'brittle' and
might inspire a few folks but not be usable by most, and some other
(large) organization will build what it wants on top of our dreams
There is little chance that I will ever use a monetary system that
is so brittle that it fails if one link is down or one cypher
unuseable due to it's being cracked by some unscrupulous agency.
This important subject of protocols is the topic of the next San
Francisco Bay Area Cypherpunks meeting.