Latest Threat To Clog The Internet: Bird Flu

from the say-what? dept

Now, we've heard all sorts of nutty claims over the years that the internet was on the verge of collapsing -- but at least most of them seemed to be based on at least somewhat reasonable premises concerning new applications (such as video or file sharing) that use a lot more bandwidth than previous applications. However, the latest warning just seems to be fear mongering for the sake of fear mongering. Broadband Reports points out that some consultants (I'm sorry, "business continuity planners") are warning that bird flu could crash the internet next. The idea is that if there's a big bird flu pandemic, everyone will start working from home and telecommuting -- and that work will then overload the internet. This doesn't mean that such scenarios shouldn't be considered -- but it seems to go a bit far to assume that such an event would automatically overload the network. Assuming that most of the workers who need the internet already use it at work, all telecommuting would do is distribute the bandwidth use and maybe increase it at the margin. It's hard to see how having everyone switch to remote working would really add that much burden to the network -- but it sure makes for a good story for these consultants.
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  1. identicon
    |333173|3|_||3, 14 Feb 2007 @ 6:04pm

    Bird flu hospitalises you for weeks, stupids, so even if the infection rates were to be as bad as the tabliods say, then you would not be oin the net. When you come out of hospital, you will find that a whole lot less people are on the net, so bandwidth wil not be an issue. Power supplied by coal fired power stations in many countires will continue, because they have stockpiles to counter the effects of strikes. Hydro power can continue with little attention, although there would be likely to be a lot of maintenace afterwards.
    Refineries would need the right 30% to be absent to cause a shutdown, since floorsweepers, administrators, beancountrs, canteen staff, and so forth are not despereately needed to produce fuel.

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