What Does the Internet Look Like?

Often, pictures communicate more eloquently than words or numbers. This is the case with Barry Lyon’s Opte Project, which uses traceroute data to generate a visual “map” of the Internet. (For a brief overview, see this Nov. 28, 2003 New Scientist article.)

The images are extraordinary – beautiful, detailed, and ethereal. They are also useful. Lyon writes, “Mapping the Internet weekly will allow us to see major disasters in different parts of the world. The Internet is a huge disaster sensor. If I had maps of pre-war Iraq and then compared them to today, one could see how badly Iraq was destroyed.”

2 thoughts on What Does the Internet Look Like?

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  1. Every blog I’ve been to has an entry on the new Opte images, every tech online news site has an article, my RSS feeds are full of it…

    This blog entry is a typical example of the redundancy I was writing about in http://blog.contentious.com/archives/000044.html : I end up receiving the same news item over and over again.

    Some argue that the frequency is an indicator of importance. That may or may not be true. To me, it’s an indicator of copy&paste. And I have to skip over all those news items with no benefit whatsoever.

    Matthias

  2. Opte Project: What the Internet Looks Like
    Courtesy this post from Contentious Weblog, comes news of Barry Lyon’s Opte Project, which uses traceroute data to generate a visual “map” of the Internet. This New Scientist article article gives some background. Most importantly the project generates…