Think about the most successful, widely scaled networks that let us function in today’s world. No I’m not talking about internet service providers, I mean the Really, Really Big Networks. The ones that without which modern civilization would be very different. The telephone system. Intermodal containerized shipping. Air traffic control. And they all have one vitally important enabling element that made them all scalable: a Control Layer that is not intrinsic to the electronic or physical streams that make up the network traffic. For phones, it’s Signalling System 7, which has managed to run the world of voice calls for decades. For intermodal shipping, it’s container manifests. For aviation, it’s ATC. And they truly do, run the globe.

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