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The Beginnings and Prospective Ending of “End-to-End”

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  • Paul A. David

Abstract

October 2001 The technology of “the Internet” is not static. Although its “end-to-end” architecture has made this “connection-less” communications system readily “extensible,” and highly encouraging to innovation both in hardware and software applications, there are strong pressures for engineering changes. Some of these are wanted to support novel transport services (e.g. voice telephony, real-time video); others would address drawbacks that appeared with opening of the Internet to public and commercial traffic – e.g., the difficulties of blocking delivery of offensive content, suppressing malicious actions (e.g. “denial of service” attacks), pricing bandwidth usage to reduce congestion. The expected gains from making “improvements” in the core of the network should be weighed against the loss of the social and economic benefits that derive from the “end-to-end” architectural design. Even where technological “fixes” can be placed at the networks’ edges, the option remains to search for alternative, institutional mechanisms of governing conduct in cyberspace. Working Papers Index

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Paper provided by Stanford University, Department of Economics in its series Working Papers with number 01012.

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Date of creation: Oct 2001
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Handle: RePEc:wop:stanec:01012

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  1. Jeffrey K. MacKie-Mason & Hal R. Varian, 1996. "Economic FAQs About the Internet," Industrial Organization 9606001, EconWPA.
  2. Paul A.David, 2005. "Path dependence, its critics and the quest for ‘historical economics’," Economic History 0502003, EconWPA.
  3. David, Paul A & Steinmueller, W Edward, 1996. "Standards, trade and competition in the emerging global information infrastructure environment," Telecommunications Policy, Elsevier, vol. 20(10), pages 817-830, December.
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