18404Re: History of networking
- Sep 24 7:14 AM
It would probably be useful to separate the discussion into WANs vs. LANs. Most textbooks erroneously distinguish between these two as being based on distance. The proper distinction is between point-to-point connections and multipoint connections. FDDI is a LAN technology that can span about 200 kilometers, IIRC, and I have seen computers connected by null modem cables where one computer was literally sitting on top of the other in a point-to-point WAN.
The original question in this thread had to do with Ethernet, in particular DIX Ethernet. Ethernet existed before the DIX consortium got together and came up with a slightly different frame format. Ethernet is a multipoint protocol. Arcnet also was a LAN architecture from the same era, and Datapoint fans claim that it predated Ethernet.
Comparing these technologies with point-to-point connections is useless – it would be easy (and not particularly enlightening, IMHO) to include things like telegraphs.
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