Egypt is about to enter its third consecutive week of mass protests
. Why hasn’t Tahrir Square turned into Tiananmen? Why isn’t this man this man
? Why do the Egyptian public and the army appear so close, and why hasn’t the military turned its arms on the protestors, nor pushed Mubarak out?
One possible reason has been largely ignored by the media: it is bad business to kill your own customers
. An inside report from NPR’s Planet Money
, aided by this Wikileak diplomatic cable
and an insightful piece by Robert Springborg
You are reading this post thanks to the submarine communications cables
that connect the continents together (except Antarctica). [more inside]
Cables: Don’t like ‘em.
Despite the rise of wireless technologies, the back of your computer or stereo is likely a tangle of wires. No matter how carefully you first connect them, they are soon gleefully entangled into a snarled mass. Mathematics
offers insight into the problem.
Much of the Middle East has been without reliable internet access recently due to the somewhat suspicious cutting of four seperate underwater cables
, in seperate locations, within a few days of each other. The problem has been alleviated by re-routing of traffic
until ships can reach the cables to repair them, a process which may take several weeks
. The problem was initially believed to be caused by anchors of passing ships, but that has since been retracted
and deals have already been signed by several companies for new cables
. [more inside]
Cables, Cables, Cables
I got to thinking last night about all those cables lying along the ocean floor. This
is a fascinating article on the history of telephonic cables; while this one
adds a bit more color, and several interesting paintings.
"As history shows, the demand for undersea network capacities will only increase. There's no such thing as too much cable."
Superconducting power transmission cables
In another thread, I mentioned that High-Tc power transmission cables were an example of an anticipated use of a technology which never came to fruition, and that the possible energy savings weren't worth the effort. Oops.