Monday, August 02, 2004

The RSS Effect

Another scale-emergent infrastructure problem?

RSS Traffic Burdens Publisher's Servers:

Infoworld.com experiences a "massive surge of RSS newsreader activity at the top of every hour," according to Chad Dickerson, the CTO of Infoworld. "If I didn’t know how RSS worked, I would think we were being slammed by a bunch of zombies sitting on compromised home PCs"

I remember at my old job, actually syncing all of the PCs' clocks to be accurate would have meant that they would all have tried to update their virus definition files at the same time, so actually them having different times saved network load. Perhaps their are similarities and analogies here to monocultures and normalisation dangers. (With wild abandon, what if everyone in society did think and act the same? Would we eventually self-combust through lack of free thinkers?)

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