Writings and Musings
Welcome to my writings.
If you want the recent essays check out the sidebar on the left or, better,
Further Readings for a
curated list of essays.
Other essays are listed in chronological order and then by category. The main
essays are in larger letters and minor documents (such as messages posted on discussion
sites) are indented and in smaller letters. The documents themselves are located
on this site (www.Frankston.com) and as
well as external sites.
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||Columns written in 1998-1999 -- blogging before blogs. Look here
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Some of the recent entries are also listed on the sidebar. Secondary
items such as postings on other mailing lists are indented. Note that the year
shown is the year the essay was updated. An essay written in 1979 might be listed
under 2009 if it was updated recently.
Putting it all Together? 25-Dec-2014
PDFThe idea of an automated home is premised on the idea that we can just put together any number of programs and they would auto-magically compromise a coherent whole. After a half a century of programming I know we still have a lot to learn.
Re: The Creepy New Wave of the Internet 17-Nov-2014
There is a tendency to project our world views on the Internet. To some it is a way to centralize power and control. But the origins of the Internet are just the opposite -- something that emerged from our ability to use computing to create our own solutions.
Community Broadband Podcast 03-Nov-2014
“In this episode, we talk a lot about how to think about what he terms "connectivity" rather than telecommunications. Telecommunications are a train track - the network owner determines when to move the trains and at what capacity. Our goal for networks is more akin to the roads, where we have more capacity to move around and pick our own routes on our own schedule”
Refactoring Consumer Electronics 24-Dec-2012 (Updated: 19-Oct-2014
PDFArticle in the January 2013 issue of the IEEE Consumer Electronics magazine. The concepts behind the Internet -- the best efforts exchange of raw bits -- represents a basic shift from a framing of electrons and pipes to one in which we can focus on relationships and applications. (The IEEE version is available here)
Connected Things 16-Oct-2014
PDFThe power of the Internet comes from our ability to build connected applications. We use the term “Internet of Things” to extend this concept beyond computation to include the objects in the physical world.
Connectivity Policy 17-Jul-2014 (Updated: 31-Jul-2014
PDFThe internet is a different way of using the same facilities (wires, radios etc.) used for telecommunications. The big difference is that the Internet approach is not limited to provider-defined for-profit offerings. The differences go far deeper.
I use the term "borderless connectivity" for the new concept. The approach is being adopted from the edge -- driven by market forces. Telecommunications becomes just another resource as one way to extend connectivity as we shift from being dependent upon service providers to creating our own solutions.
Today's Internet gives a hint of what we can do with the new opportunities.
Connectivity problem 10-Jul-2014
We are still dealing with the legacy of circuits using protocols and approaches which presume a common pipe for all packets and purposes.
(Not) Getting the Message Across 30-Jun-2014
PDFIf we are to get the benefits of the Internet's connectivity we need transparent paths without intermediaries either to press "agree" or having protocols like Bluetooth which insist on "understanding" the messages before passing them on.
PDFHTML5 is becoming the very portable virtual machine that makes it easy to create and share rich interactive applications.
Comsos - Science and motivation 08-Mar-2014
We should applaud efforts to broaden interest in science. The reason science funding is often driven by the military is not because we like war but because we fail to appreciate the value inquiry.
Thinking Outside the Internet 07-Mar-2014
PDF 📹 (video) In order to understand the importance of connectivity we have to think outside the paradigm of pipes or channels that characterized classic period of networking dating back to Shannon. The Internet itself is about borderless connectivity with the value and meaning outside the channels.
This has strong implications for how we provide (and fund) the opportunity we associate with "The Internet"
MAC addresses and Tracking 13-Feb-2014
We need to remember that many of the constraints we try to work around are simply engineering and policy decisions. We could revisit them rather than trying to work around the problems. The MAC addresses and the channels we use to communicate are just constructs.
Routing (Packets) vs. Gatewaying (Messages 23-Jan-2014
PDFOur smart phones are wonderful devices with many functions built-in. This is in contrast with the simplicity of the Internet in which we simply route packets of bits rather than having to wait for third parties for each message. I contrast the simple routing of packets with the complexities of gatewaying messages with service providers attempting to “add value” to our relationships.
Evolution and the Internet 06-Jan-2014
Understanding how systems evolve is as much about the Internet as biology. We need to understand that the Internet wasn't designed as much as evolved as we discovered how to communicate without depending on a third party in the middle of the conversation.