Wondering how undersea cables in Asia recently interfered with AT&T’s network? Wired ran an excruciatingly detailed piece in 1996 by the hacker tourist that explains how the worldwide network of undersea cables—tubes, if you will—connects us to our friends halfway around the world. [Wired]


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  1. Jaysyn was banned for: https://consumerist.com/5032912/the-subprime-meltdown-will-be-nothing-compared-to-the-prime-meltdown#c7042646 says:

    Neal Stephenson is hands down one of the best hard sci-fi authors I’ve ever had the pleasure of reading.

    Just had to throw that out there.

  2. humphrmi says:

    I’m sure Neal Stephenson is a great writer and all, but what does rubber plants in Sri Lanka and Penang have to do with undersea cables in Asia and how they recently interfered with AT&T’s network?

    Cliff notes would be nice ….

  3. Trai_Dep says:

    Silly Hump – “Neal Stephenson” is Aquaman’s civilian name. Jeezus.

    Wait, so does this mean that China gets a discount on the selling of our data that AT&T peddles too?

  4. kenblakely says:

    @humphrmi: Dude: You should read the article. I read it when it came out in 96, and I still remember it to this day. It is a GREAT piece, and well worth your time, trust me…

  5. Jesse in Japan says:

    So the Internet really IS a series of tubes.

  6. djxspike says:


  7. TPIRman says:

    Carey, the previous Consumerist post you linked to is not correct, as noted by me and others in the comments. Statements from AT&T thus far regarding the cable breaks have referred only to Mideast outages. So while the linked article from Wired is interesting, it’s not a huge mystery why a cut cable in the Mediterranean would affect the network in Egypt.

  8. yesteryear says:

    the information superhighway is actually a habitrail.

  9. matthew_k says:

    Definitely one of the best wired articles ever. And if I remember, the magazine was about twice as big as normal solely because of the length of the article.