I thought I might be having a bad week. First, a friend of mine who works in the telecommunications industry told me the Internet is going to go kerplop one of these days. Because it was never intended for the sort of use it's getting, he said, it isn't designed to be sufficiently "robust."

"How about redundant?" I said. "Doesn't it have enough redundancy to avoid infrastructure breakdown?" I didn't want him to think he was the only one who knew how to talk like an engineer.

"No redundancy to speak of," he said.

As I understood what he was...

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