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The Value of Community

What seems, now, like a few short months ago, I was drawn into a small community known as The Network Collective. This last week, we launched our paid membership service. The first thing that must

By |June 4th, 2018|Categories: LEFT, NORESHARE, OTHER, WRITTEN|Comments Off on The Value of Community

A glance back at the looking glass: Will IP really take over the world?

In 2003, the world of network engineering was far different than it is today. For instance, EIGRP was still being implemented on the basis of its ability to support multi-protocol routing. SONET, and other optical

By |November 6th, 2017|Categories: LEFT, RESEARCH, ROUTING, WRITTEN|Tags: , , |Comments Off on A glance back at the looking glass: Will IP really take over the world?

Ethereum: The “Next New Internet?”

According to this article, we now have a new Internet being developed: Ethereum (thanks to Chase Mitchell, one of my regular readers, for pointing this new development out). In fact, it's called "web 3.0," in

By |June 5th, 2017|Categories: LEFT, REACTION, WRITTEN|Comments Off on Ethereum: The “Next New Internet?”

Troubleshooting: Half Split

The best models will support the second crucial skill required for troubleshooting: seeing the system as a set of problems to be solved. The problem/solution mindset is so critical in really understanding how

By |May 16th, 2017|Categories: LEFT, SKILLS, TROUBLESHOOTING, WRITTEN|Comments Off on Troubleshooting: Half Split

Distributed Denial of Service Open Threat Signaling (DOTS)

When the inevitable 2AM call happens—"our network is under attack"—what do you do? After running through the OODA loop (1, 2, 3, 4), used communities to distribute the attack as much as possible, mitigated the

By |April 3rd, 2017|Categories: DDOS, LEFT, STANDARDS, TECHNOLOGY, WRITTEN|Tags: , , , , , , |Comments Off on Distributed Denial of Service Open Threat Signaling (DOTS)

The Perfect and the Good

Perfect and good: one is just an extension of the other, right? When I was 16 (a long, long, long time ago), I was destined to be a great graphis—a designer and/or illustrator

By |February 27th, 2017|Categories: DESIGN, LEFT, SKILLS, WRITTEN|Comments Off on The Perfect and the Good

Metacognitive

If I could choose just a handful of skills you must learn to be a successful engineer, being metacognitive would certainly be among them. What is metacognition? OOne of my favorite books on the virtue

By |February 15th, 2017|Categories: LEFT, MENTAL, SKILLS, WRITTEN|1 Comment

Leave Your Ego at the Door

You are just about to walk into the interview room. Regardless of whether you are being interviewed, or interviewing—what are you thinking about? Are you thinking about winning? Are you thinking about whining? Or are

By |February 8th, 2017|Categories: CULTURE, LEFT, WRITTEN|Comments Off on Leave Your Ego at the Door

snaproute Go BGP Code Dive (14): First Steps in Processing an Update

In the last post on this topic, we found the tail of the update chain. The actual event appears to be processed here— case BGPEventUpdateMsg: st.fsm.StartHoldTimer() bgpMsg := data.(*packet.BGPMessage) st.fsm.ProcessUpdateMessage(bgpMsg) —which is found around line

By |December 12th, 2016|Categories: BGP, BGP CODE, CODING, LEFT, WRITTEN|Tags: , , |Comments Off on snaproute Go BGP Code Dive (14): First Steps in Processing an Update

Reaction: Forced Updates

The controversy over Microsoft forcing upgrades on users is in the news again, as the EFF has posted an article once again about the forced upgrades to Windows 10, and the various data collection schemes

By |August 25th, 2016|Categories: LEFT, REACTION, WRITTEN|Comments Off on Reaction: Forced Updates

Short Cuts

It was going to be a long evening, anyway—the flight check bird was coming in, and both Instrument Landing Systems (ILSs) needed to be tuned up and ready for the test. So we took some

By |July 6th, 2016|Categories: CULTURE, LEFT, WRITTEN|Tags: |Comments Off on Short Cuts

Universal Scaling and Complexity

The universal scaling law is a model designed to help engineers understand transaction based systems, particularly databases and applications. What could a transaction based system have to do with network design? After all, networks aren't

By |May 18th, 2016|Categories: LEFT, NORESHARE, RESEARCH, WRITTEN|Comments Off on Universal Scaling and Complexity

Innovation and the Internet

Industries mature, of course. That they do so shouldn't be surprising to anyone who's watched the world for very long. The question is — do they mature in a way that places a few players

By |December 2nd, 2015|Categories: CULTURE, LEFT, WRITTEN|Comments Off on Innovation and the Internet

Rule 11 is your friend

It's common enough in the networking industry — particularly right now — to bemoan the rate of change. In fact, when I worked in the Cisco Technical Assistance Center (TAC), we had a phrase that

By |October 12th, 2015|Categories: LEFT, SKILLS, WRITTEN|Comments Off on Rule 11 is your friend

Skipping the Hype Cycle

Sipping from the firehose is a big problem in the tech industries. Every time I turn around there's yet another new technology to make everything better. If you can't quote rule 11, you need to

By |August 24th, 2015|Categories: CULTURE, LEFT, WRITTEN|Tags: |Comments Off on Skipping the Hype Cycle

Big Data for Social Engineering

First, it integrates with corporate directories such as Active Directory and social media sites like LinkedIn to map the connections between employees, as well as important outside contacts. Bell calls this the “real org chart.”

By |August 20th, 2015|Categories: LEFT, WRITTEN|Tags: , |Comments Off on Big Data for Social Engineering

Engineering Sense

Why didn't they ask Evans? For those who haven't read the famous Agatha Christie novel, the entire point revolves around a man uttering these words just before dying. Who is Evans? What does this person

By |August 10th, 2015|Categories: LEFT, SKILLS, WRITTEN|Tags: |Comments Off on Engineering Sense

Commercializing Community

No online community with a collective identity has successfully become a large business like the segregated, follower-based communities of Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Youtube. Strangely, it is the retailer Amazon (proprietor of acquired communities Twitch,

By |July 16th, 2015|Categories: CULTURE, LEFT, WRITTEN|Tags: |Comments Off on Commercializing Community

False Dichotomy

Last week wasn't a good one for the cause of network engineering. United Airlines grounded flights because of a router failure, the New York Stock Exchange stopped trading for several hours because of a technical

By |July 13th, 2015|Categories: LEFT, SKILLS, WRITTEN|1 Comment

Vendor Neutral

And then Bilbo held the router up to the light and wondered aloud... Whatever is, vendor neutral? Vendor neutral certainly receives a lot of play in the world of network engineering. You might have even

By |May 13th, 2015|Categories: CULTURE, LEFT, WRITTEN|Tags: |Comments Off on Vendor Neutral

General Howe’s Dog

The morning after a battle — one of the first won by the American army in its battle for freedom from the British Empire — if you happened to be on the scene, you might

By |May 11th, 2015|Categories: CULTURE, LEFT, WRITTEN|Comments Off on General Howe’s Dog

The Problem with Peanuts

I was hungry. Perhaps that's a good excuse, or perhaps not. Either way, I sat down after ordering, took a peanut, broke the nuts out of the shell, and ate them. After eating the peanut,

By |March 23rd, 2015|Categories: CULTURE, LEFT, WRITTEN|Tags: |Comments Off on The Problem with Peanuts

Act!

Part 1: Getting Inside the Loop Part 2: Orientation Part 3: Decide! Once you've observed, oriented, and decided, it's time to act. This might seem like a minor concept, but it's actually really, really hard

By |March 16th, 2015|Categories: LEFT, OODA LOOP, SKILLS, WRITTEN|Tags: |1 Comment

Decide!

Last week we talked about orienteering — using models and information to orient ourselves to what's going on in the network. This is part of the OODA loop, which we talked about two weeks ago.

By |March 9th, 2015|Categories: LEFT, OODA LOOP, SKILLS, WRITTEN|Tags: |Comments Off on Decide!

On Losing

When I got off the phone, I knew I'd blown it. I'd gotten so wrapped up in the discussion on eVPNs that I might have crossed over that magical line between, "this is a really

By |January 5th, 2015|Categories: CULTURE, LEFT, SKILLS, WRITTEN|Comments Off on On Losing