The Internetz: What Is It Exactly?

To such a profound metaphysical question, there can be two answers.

First, as Senator Ted Stevens once famous said: the Internet is a series of tubes.

Or, as Senate Bill 980 says, in Section 3(a):

The term `Internet’ means collectively the myriad of computer and telecommunications facilities, including equipment and operating software, which comprise the interconnected worldwide network of networks that employ the Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol, or any predecessor or successor protocol to such protocol, to communicate information of all kinds by wire or radio.

But is such a definition right? After all, to define the Internet using the concept of the Internet Protocol is circular.

Plus, it does not have the Zen-like qualities of Senator Stevens’ definition.


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