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Geoff Daily

App-Rising.com covers the development and adoption of broadband applications, the deployment of and need for broadband networks, and the demands placed on policy to adapt to the revolutionary opportunities made possible by the Internet.

App-Rising.com is written by Geoff Daily, a DC-based technology journalist, broadband activist, marketing consultant, and Internet entrepreneur.

App-Rising.com is supported in part by AT&T;, however all views and opinions expressed herein are solely my own.

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June 7, 2007 10:03 AM

Visualizing the Internet through Akamai

Just stumbled across an interesting section of Akamai's website.

Akamai is a content delivery network, or CDN, which manages a network of servers placed across the country and throughout the world. They enable the delivery of content, including webpages, live and on-demand video and audio, and applications.

The link above will take you to a visualization module they've created on their website that shows in real-time the traffic that is going through their network. You can check out how many live and on-demand streams are in use and how many visitors they're serving per minute.

They've also got a real-time web monitor here that shows a map of the world highlighting where Internet traffic is particularly heavy. Also available is a mode where you can see what areas of the world have been hit most heavily by network attacks in the last 24 hours. (As I write this, Venezuela appears to be getting hit hard as they're the only country that's bright white.)

I can't confirm Akamai's claim that they deliver 20% of the world's Web traffic, but it wouldn't surprise me at all if that were true. And that's what makes these pages interesting, as they provide a window into what the Internet is doing at this exact moment.

For example, Akamai's currently serving over 30 million users a minute. If that 20% is correct, extrapolate that out and you can see that 150 million people are currently using the Internet.

Of course this is an incredibly inexact science, and in terms of the global population that number still only represents a small percentage of people online right now.

But even still, I can't help but marvel at the thought of how far the Internet has come as a legitimate mass medium, or enabler of mass media, or whatever you want to call it. 150 million is a lot of people doing the same kind of thing at the same time all across the world.

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