Merit Network
Can't find what you're looking for? Search the Mail Archives.
  About Merit   Services   Network   Resources & Support   Network Research   News   Events   Home

Discussion Communities: Merit Network Email List Archives

North American Network Operators Group

Date Prev | Date Next | Date Index | Thread Index | Author Index | Historical

Re: East Coast outage?

  • From: Joe Abley
  • Date: Fri Aug 15 13:48:52 2003

On Friday, 15 August 2003, at 11:55AM, wrote:

Perhaps the lesson to learn is that very large networks don't always
lead to very high stability. A much larger number of smaller, more
autonomous generation and transmission facilities might have much more
reasonable interconnection requirements, and hence less wide-ranging
failure modes.
And if we extrapolate that lesson to IP networks it implies that any
medium to large sized organization should do their own BGP peering
and multihome to 3 or more upstream network providers.
I don't think that extrapolation is entirely reasonable. The purpose of the Internet is to provide global connectivity; the purpose of a power generation and distribution network is to provide access to power, regardless of where it was generated.

 On the other
hand, if you understand why electrical networks shed load and develop
their cascading failures, you might see some parallels between "load"
and the propagation of BGP announcements which are worrying.
A mismatch between content providers and consumers seems like a natural challenge for an Internet of distributed content. It's not obvious to me that you need to engineer around that problem in the power network to the same extent.

I wonder how much of the understanding and "100 years experience" of building power distribution networks is based on the fact that affordable, distributed, small-scale power generation is not possible, mandating large-scale, centralised generation and correspondingly complicated transmission. Perhaps the power generation problem needs the attention of a fresh set of eyes.


Discussion Communities

About Merit | Services | Network | Resources & Support | Network Research
News | Events | Contact | Site Map | Merit Network Home

Merit Network, Inc.