THE FUTURE OF THE INTERNET

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          Everywhere we go, we hear about the Internet. It’s on tele­vision, in magazines, newspapers, and in schools. One might think that this network of millions of computers around the globe is as fast and captivating as television, but with more and more users logging on everyday and staying on longer and longer, this «Information Superhighway» could be perhaps more correctly referred to as an expressway of big city centre at rush hour.

           It is estimated that thirty five to forty million users cur­rently are on the Internet. According to a recent statistics, an average Internet call lasts five times as longer as the average regular telephone call. 10 percent of the Internet calls last 6 hours or longer. This can cause ah overload and, in turn, cause telephone network to fail. The local network was designed for short calls which you make and then hang up, but Internet calls often occupy a line for hours. With so many users in the Inter­net and their number is growing by 200 percent annually, it certainly provides new challenges for the telephone companies. The Internet, up to the beginning of the 90s, was used only to read a different text. Then in the early 90’s, a way was made to see pictures and listen to a sound on the Internet. This break­through made the Internet to be most demanded means of com­munication, data saving and transporting.

          However, today’s net is much more than just pictures, text, and sound. The Internet is now filled with voice massages, vi­deo conferencing and video games. With voice massages, users can talk over the Internet for the price of the local phone call. Nowadays we no longer have to own a computer to access the Internet. Now, devices such as Web TV allow our television to browse the Web and use Electronic Mail. Cellular phones are now also dialing up the Internet to provide E-mail and answe­ring machine services. The telephone network was not designed and built to handle these sorts of things. Many telephone com­panies are spending enormous amounts of money to upgrade the telephone lines.

         K. Kao and G. Hockman were the first to come up with the idea of using fiber optic cables, as opposed to copper wire, to carry telephone signals. Fiber optics uses pulses of light to transmit binary code, such as that used in computers and other electronic devices. As a result the amount of bandwidth is inc­redibly raised. Another solution for the problem is fast mo­dems which satisfy the need for speed.

          By accessing the Net through the coaxial cable that pro­vides television to our homes, the speed can be increased 1,000 fold. However, the cable system was built to only send infor­mation one way. In other words, they can send stuff to us, but we can’t send anything back, if there is no modem available.

         Yet another way is being introduced to access the Inter­net, and that is through the use of a satellite dish just like the TV dishes currently used to deliver television from satellites in space to your home. However, like cable connection, the in­formation can only be sent one way.

          Faster ways of connecting to the Internet may sound like a solution to the problem, but, just as new lanes on highways attract more cars, a faster Internet could attract many times more users, making it even slower than before.

          Тоhelp solve the problem of Internet clogs, Internet pro­viders are trying new ways of pricing for customers. So, in business time any connection to Net cost more than your con­nection in the night.

         In conclusion, I should add that if we want to keep the Inter­net usable and fairly fast, we must not only improve the telephone lines and means of access, but also be reasonable in usage.

 

 

 

QUESTIONS:

 

1. How many users are currently in the Internet?

2. How long does an average Internet call last?

3. What can cause the overload of the telephone system?

4. What was the main purpose of the Internet up to the 90s?

5. Do we need to have a computer to get access to the Inter­net today?

6. Who was the first to come up with the idea of using fiber optic cables?

7. What is the alternative way to get access to the Internet today?

 

 

VOCABULARY:

 

network — сеть

to captivate — пленить

to log on — входить, подключаться

to last — длиться

overload — перегрузка

to grow (past grew, p.p.grown) — расти, увеличиваться

breakthrough — крупное достижение, прорыв

voice massage — голосовое послание

video conferencing — видео-конференц-связь

WebTV — веб-телевидение

to browse — просматривать

cellular phone — сотовый телефон

to dialing up — набирать номер, звонить

answering machine — автоответчик

to handle — обращаться, иметь дело с

amount — количество

fiber optic cables — оптиковолоконный кабель

opposed — зд. вместо

binary code — бинарный код, двоичный код

amount of bandwidth — пропускная способность

fast modem — быстрый модем

coaxial cable — коаксильный кабель

to increase 1,000 fold — увеличить(ся) в 1000 раз

satellite dish — спутниковая тарелка

lane — линии движения

clog — засорение, препятствие

customer — клиент, покупатель

business time — бизнес-время

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