Scientists Discover Network-Based Lifeforms

Fake News written by Jonathan Day on Wednesday, February 2, 2000

from the we're-not-talking-about-o'reilly-books dept.

Researchers in the field of Cryptonet-Zoology issued the following announcement today, after several years of painstaking research into the phenomena of "Network Lag":

"We have successfully identified three new species of life within the Internet, and two new habitats. Our research indicates that these are having a significant impact on the usage of the Internet.

Extensive studies led to the discovery of Network Buffalo, a species of buffalo which now exists entirely within analog and digital networks. Our research indicates that a technician at MIT left the back of a computer open, in the early 60's, which allowed the buffalo to enter. Since then, they have been grazing on clumps of packets and substantially changing the electronic ecosystem. Some buffalo also broke into the old analog phone system, prior to the installation of cattle grids on Internet gateways. By supersampling the sound of so-called 'phone static', we have shown this to be the animal calls between the buffalo.

Additional research led us to the discovery of Router Swamps. Drinks spilled onto keyboards drip down the wires and collect in pools at the bottom of the routers. These eventually become swamps, which unwary connections can fall into. Inhabiting these swamps is a species of digital alligator, previously unknown to science. These alligator feed off the trapped connections, and other nearby prey. Extensive tests with traceroute indicate that connections sometimes do escape these swamps, but injuries can be severe.

Lastly, we wish to introduce to the world a third species, an electronic penguin. It has long been known that in the aquatic depths of the Electron Ocean, there exist schools of red herring, which confuse and mislead the unwary voyager. The penguin (scientific name Tuxus Tuxus) eats these in large quantities. Voyagers are advised to have several of these penguin aboard, for safety."

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