Addressing Fears

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In a ReadWriteWeb blog post last month writen by editor in chief Richard MacManus , it was reported that John Curran, president-CEO of the American Registry for Internet Numbers, said the Internet will run out of available Web addresses in fewer than 12 months. An enormous influx of data is predicted due to demand increases in sensor information, electrical- and water-power smart grids, RFID (radio frequency identification), mobile device-to-Internet connectivity and annual growth in user-generated content. Since 1980, the Web has utilized IPv4 (Internet Protocol version 4), a 32-bit numbered address providing just over 4 billion unique addresses, of which only 6% now remain, Curran said. To avoid significant deceleration of Internet growth via an inflationary “black market,” Curran and Vint Cerf, Google's chief Internet evangelist, pointed to the latest edition, IPv6—a 128-bit address that would supply every individual on the globe with nearly “50 thousand trillion trillion addresses,” according to ReadWriteWeb. While large carriers and Internet such companies as Comcast, Google and Verizon have begun to embrace the transition, critics warn against fear-mongering, burgeoning costs and time-consuming efforts in a bare-bones economy.
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