Sunday, June 28, 2009

Bandwidth

In the beginning there was a line. That's it, just a line, just one dimension.

Things got kind of crowded, however. Even though a line has an infinite number of points, practically speaking, it was crowded.

So then came multiple lines. But since there was still only one dimension that made it impossible to move to the other side of whatever was next to you.

So lines were modified and width was added - a second dimension. That helped ease the problem and again, even though this allowed for an infinite number of points within that space, practically speaking it got crowded.

So another modification was made, to add height. Three dimensions. Not only could you now go around the person next to you, you could go above or underneath them. But wouldn't you know, even this became too crowded to be practical.

So guess what? A fourth dimension was added: time. Everything did not have to exist simultaneously, nor move simultaneously. What once occupied a particular point in the three dimensions at one moment in time was gone the next, enabling something else to take its place and thus relieve congestion.

Still, a big traffic jam occurred because only one thing was able to move at any one time. If you weren't near the front of the line (so to speak), your wait may have approached infinity. That, too, was not really practical.

So multitasking appeared. Things could all move at once, although at times this got unwieldy with things bumping and crashing into each other. But still, operating in four dimensions greatly facilitated operations.

As the number of things in our world continues to increase, so does the complexity of movements and wouldn't you know, this is placing a burden on time, too. There is not enough time to enable everything to take place simultaneously; there is not enough bandwidth.

You think you forgot something? You don't remember where you put something? You think your memory isn't what it used to be? The real explanation is that you skipped points in time and were simply not engaged to be privy to what happened during those points in time in which there wasn't enough bandwidth. You were placed in a brownout queue.

This lack of time bandwidth is becoming increasingly serious. A fifth dimension is going to be required to handle the overload. I'm not talking about the Twilight Zone or the musical group, but I mean a true fifth dimension that will ease the shortage of bandwidth that currently exists.

If you have trouble understanding this, just liken it to how we have moved from DOS to Windows 3.1 to the upcoming Windows 7. Mac users probably already think they are living in the fifth dimension.




Where is the usual Costco report, you might we wondering.. I didn't have time to write that today.

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