4.1.1 Space problems
Probably the best known of these is the fact that the internet is running out of space for identifying computers. Each computer in a network needs to be identified by a unique data pattern known as an IP address. The current technology used to transport data around the internet is such that in the comparatively near future we shall run out of space to hold these unique addresses. Happily this is a problem that has been identified and groups of researchers around the globe have developed new technologies which will eventually overcome this problem, one of these technologies being a new version of the protocol used to transfer data over the internet.
It is tempting to describe this in more detail; however, remember that this material is about developing applications for the internet: I shall confidently assume that all the work that has been carried out to cope with the explosive growth of the internet will be implemented ‘under the bonnet’ and developers will not need to know the details of this.
The great renaming
Periodically parts of the internet have to be reorganised. In the late 1980s the administrators of the newsgroups within Usenet decided to reorganise the naming conventions used for the newsgroups. They adopted a hierarchic convention so that topics would include sub-topics which, in turn, contained sub-sub-topics and so on. This was known as the great renaming.
Having again made the point about what is not relevant to this course it is worth looking at something that is: web servers, and the fact that what they were designed for is not what they are now being expected to do.