Posts Tagged ‘networking’

Internet Protocol over Avian Carriers

March 16, 2010

My first non-helloworld post! How exciting! Anyways…

We all know RFC 1149, the April Fool’s RFC detailing how Internet Protocol datagrams can be transmitted over avian carriers (such as homing pidgeons).

I feel it is a bad standard, because it defines layer 1 aspects of the protocol.

The scroll of paper is wrapped around one leg of the avian carrier.
A band of duct tape is used to secure the datagram's edges.

X over Y standards typically require pre-existing X and Y. Let’s use Ethernet as an example. IPoAC’s Ethernet counterpart is A Standard for the Transmission of IP Datagrams over Ethernet Networks (RFC 894). While this standard does reference some aspects of Ethernet, such as MTU, they are only the parts that affect the encapsulated data. Things like cable voltages are not defined; those are left to the Ethernet standard.

I do understand that writing standards involves work, and they only wanted to write one. This could have been an Avian Carrier Networking standard, which requires that higher protocol data is printed in hexadecimal and attached.

It’s quite a humorous exercise to brainstorm ways of making an Avian Carrier Networking standard that is similar to other layer 1 networking standards.  For example, there could be provisions for unique hardware addressing (DNA), and broadcasting (manned pigeon congregation points). Something like ARP could then be implemented by sending a pigeon to the broadcast point. It would then have affixed to it the DNA of the pigeon holding the requested IP.

Locating pigeons by DNA is left as an exercise to the reader. Be creative! I’ll be reading comments.

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