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Bees Can Optimize Internet Bottlenecks

ScuttleMonkey posted more than 6 years ago | from the bee-all-that-you-can-bee dept.

128

prostoalex writes "Georgia Tech and University of Oxford scientists claim bees can help up develop a better Internet traffic algorithms. By observing bees, the researchers noticed that bees pass back information on route quality. 'On a basic level, the honeybee's dilemma is a tale of two flower patches. If one patch is yielding better nectar than the other, how can the hive use its workforce most efficiently to retrieve the best supply at the moment? The solution, which earned Austrian zoologist Karl von Frisch a Nobel Prize, is a communication system called the waggle dance.' Any practical applications of that? Well, apparently ad servers, serving banners across a variety of servers, can report back on the time it took to generate the page."

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Um... (5, Funny)

varmittang (849469) | more than 6 years ago | (#21730306)

You know the tubes thing is a joke, right? You can't send live bees down it to figure out how to make it faster.

Re:Um... (4, Funny)

cgenman (325138) | more than 6 years ago | (#21730388)

Then what is going to the honeypots?

Re:Um... (5, Funny)

maxwell demon (590494) | more than 6 years ago | (#21730498)

Bears.

Beers? (3, Funny)

Jeremiah Cornelius (137) | more than 6 years ago | (#21730894)

Beers and bottlenecks? I think I will!

Re:Um... (1)

pinchhazard (728983) | more than 6 years ago | (#21732028)

PBF [pbfcomics.com]

And so it begins... (1)

TamMan2000 (578899) | more than 6 years ago | (#21732990)

Stephen Colbert will be out to get the internet in no time (as as soon as the writers strike is over).

Re:Um... (1)

NatasRevol (731260) | more than 6 years ago | (#21730406)

Yeah, the honey makes the tubes sticky, then the bees get stuck. Pretty soon, no more ads! The horror!!

Re:Um... (1)

Selfbain (624722) | more than 6 years ago | (#21730416)

So you're going with the big truck model of the internet?

What's the MTU of your average Bee? (1)

Finallyjoined!!! (1158431) | more than 6 years ago | (#21730432)

It's also cruel. But more to the point; what's the MTU of your average Bee?

Re:What's the MTU of your average Bee? (3, Funny)

theRiallatar (584902) | more than 6 years ago | (#21731440)

African or European?

Re:What's the MTU of your average Bee? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21732590)

African, specifically hybrids of Apis mellifera scutellata ("killer bees").

Re:Um... (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21730480)

I didn't believe it until i read this Bees and the Bottleneck effect [myminicity.com]

Re:Um... (2, Informative)

morgan_greywolf (835522) | more than 6 years ago | (#21730702)

Not sure what the link is, but this asshat threw the same one in the last story. The javascript is massive and slowed my browser to a crawl.

Re:Um... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21730546)

Everybody was wondering where all the bees went. Apparently the went into the tubes.

Re:Um... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21730648)

You can't send live bees down it to figure out how to make it faster.
Yet.

Re:Um... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21730786)

How dumb do you think we are? It was pretty obvious from the summary that the bees are sent to the person generating the most traffic to kill them off thus restoring bandwidth.

Re:Um... (1)

ozmanjusri (601766) | more than 6 years ago | (#21731364)

You know the tubes thing is a joke, right?

I read it as "Beer Can Optimize Internet Bottlenecks", and have been field testing ever since.

It IS faster from tubes than bottlenecks.

The internetsh work fine. I love youse guys...

Shouldn't this have been obvious... (2, Funny)

s13g3 (110658) | more than 6 years ago | (#21731974)

Shouldn't this have been an obvious or apparent extension of RFC 1149 [wikipedia.org] (or RFC 2549 [ietf.org] , for that matter) when considered in the context of natural behavior and as a proper logic exercise, instead of just a joke? A very senior security engineer and I managed to find all kinds of other interesting implications when laying out a real-world network design by using IP over Avian carriers as an analogy for the data carrying portion of a cellular telecom network, and then expanding into the rest of the forest for descriptions of other portions and functions of a network of that size and complexity. We gleaned some very interesting insights from the exercise... I'm unsurprised that someone found a corollary in the behavior of a beehive - any natural system you study is liable to have similar applications in computing, whether it's circuit design or layer 3, esp. when the system in question involves a social species.

Behold the power of bees (3, Funny)

Sciros (986030) | more than 6 years ago | (#21730320)

Man I'm not even going to read the summary or TFA no time for that time to hire a ton of bees! Forget outsourcing to China and India and Eastern Europe, teh beehive is where it's at.

This won't work (1)

Malevolent Tester (1201209) | more than 6 years ago | (#21730324)

The bees won't have room to fly properly in the tubes. Even I know that much.

Re:This won't work (1)

theeddie55 (982783) | more than 6 years ago | (#21732046)

Then we'll use bigger tubes... or smaller bees.

ads are the culprit (4, Funny)

toQDuj (806112) | more than 6 years ago | (#21730330)

Well, I notice that one way of optimising _my_ experience is to switch off the ads, java, javascript and plug-ins. Blazingly fast, the tubes then become.

Did you ever notice (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21730730)

Why is it that the latest scientific research is always first applied to:
1) war
2) advertising on the net

Re:Did you ever notice (2, Informative)

gardyloo (512791) | more than 6 years ago | (#21730810)

I believe you've made a fencepost error. In this case, it will read:
      0) porn

No joking... (3, Funny)

tgd (2822) | more than 6 years ago | (#21730336)

I used to have a problem with bees around there the FIOS ONT cabling enters my house.

Freakin' hazard going anywhere near the thing.

And my internet is freakin' fast. They might be onto something.

Re:No joking... (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21730698)

Dude, fuck that! I would punch every bee in the face! Bees aren't taking me out, I'd be like, "FUCK YOU BEE!" *PUNCH* I'm not going out that way.

Re:No joking... (1)

sexconker (1179573) | more than 6 years ago | (#21731320)

FYI: The internet does not like Dane Cook - the general consensus is that he steals his material [google.com] .

Many an internet argument have been had over this one.
(I take neither side as I don't particularly care. Just pointing it out since you'll probably be disheartened if your post is not modded 5, Funny.)

Trying to take the sting out of this news, (4, Funny)

blueZ3 (744446) | more than 6 years ago | (#21730344)

Internet researchers get hives investigating honey of an optimization tool

Re:Trying to take the sting out of this news, (1)

CriX (628429) | more than 6 years ago | (#21731356)

All your hives are belong to us!

Slashdot Uses Bees to generate faster Dupes (5, Funny)

Mike Morgan (9565) | more than 6 years ago | (#21730374)

From November [slashdot.org]

Re:Slashdot Uses Bees to generate faster Dupes (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21730636)

how dare you? this is part of the experiment to help people like me suffering from dementia [slashdot.org] or as I am supposed to say here, I have alzheimer's.. you insensitive clod!

Reasearch vs reality (4, Insightful)

afidel (530433) | more than 6 years ago | (#21730426)

The problem of internet optimization stopped being a research subject years ago and is more of a business problem. Peering relationships and lowest cost routing mean that traffic will often travel a suboptimal route from a networking perspective because it is the best route from a providers financial perspective.

Re:Reasearch vs reality (1)

sexconker (1179573) | more than 6 years ago | (#21731422)

If I, as Verizon, could route some of AT&T's traffic through my servers and, I don't know, slow down att.com, I would be all for it.
And if I, as Verizon, wanted to get the YouTube off of my back, I could route YouTube requests around my network, and force others to carry the data.

Controlling and manipulating the route would end up much like getting to the top of a search result.

But hey - as it is, I have Cox Cable, and am free to browse the websites of their competitors.
Maybe it isn't all that bad...yet.

Re:Reasearch vs reality (1)

inKubus (199753) | more than 6 years ago | (#21733384)

And all the bees are mysteriously dying [wikipedia.org] . So maybe it is a good metaphor, just not one you'd want to use..

This innovation is truly... (1)

Junior J. Junior III (192702) | more than 6 years ago | (#21730434)

...the bee's knees.

OMG! Bees! (1)

saikou (211301) | more than 6 years ago | (#21730448)

Now we'll have routers do the wiggly bee dance AND check the ping times at the same time.
What will they think of next, EBGP? :)

Re:OMG! Bees! (3, Funny)

red_dragon (1761) | more than 6 years ago | (#21730796)

Now we'll have routers do the wiggly bee dance

If a big Cisco or Juniper is running WDRP (Wiggly Dance Routing Protocol), does each line card do a different dance from the other cards in the chassis? What would such a router be called then, a hoedown? If the line cards started dancing "Thriller", will the router turn white and start chatting to young boys on IM?

Flies Can Quickly Locate: +1, PatRIOTic (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21730470)

the world's biggest Bullshitter [whitehouse.org] .

Put that in your bong and inhale it.

Cheers.

True breakthrough (2, Funny)

bwintx (813768) | more than 6 years ago | (#21730472)

Talk about a way to get "buzz" for your Web site...

Web 2.0 (4, Funny)

ruiner13 (527499) | more than 6 years ago | (#21730502)

Bees make the best web 2.0 buzzwords. They're the buzziest! I blame the hive mentality of the marketing drones for this.

Re:Web 2.0 (1)

jd (1658) | more than 6 years ago | (#21731678)

It is no longer called Web 2.0, that's so twentieth century. To conform to the new bee paradigm, it is now referred to as Honeycomb 1.5. Malware has also been renamed to Wasp. File transfer rates are now calculated in mead casks per unit druid. P2P systems no longer use seeds, they pollinate.

Re:Web 2.0 (1)

davidsyes (765062) | more than 6 years ago | (#21731994)

Somewhere someone will receive "BZ" (bravo zulu) and others will get BZZZT....

captcha: ascends

Danger Will Robinson (1)

spleen_blender (949762) | more than 6 years ago | (#21730506)

Seems like it would be rather exploitable by "herding" the "bees" to another path. Would be nice to be able to be able to have an intelligent layer to networking that knew when it was having its strings pulled. All I'm saying is that it seems like any kind of error checking required for this to be stable and secure would negate any benefit from having such a dynamic network. The power of suggestion is often unnoticed, for ironic reasons.

Re:Danger Will Robinson (3, Interesting)

MBCook (132727) | more than 6 years ago | (#21730682)

What I got from reading the article was that they weren't optimizing the 'net at large but the services in one data center. By making the individual servers in the data center allocate themselves to the various hosted sites/services based on demand. Because of this, it's basically immune to external cheating, after all there is no point. If they were changing who's packets went through their network on the way to somewhere else, there would be a reason to cheat.

The article makes perfect sense, but the domain seems a little limited to me. You have to be able to quantize things. You have to be able to shift things around (make server A be able to pick role X, Y, or Z based on which is better at the moment). In some problem sets this would be easy. For example the /. setup that was described a while back where they have a few boxes doing this, a few doing that, and they all work off the same read only NSF share. It would be easy to move the boxes that run user pages between that and static pages. It could help there.

On the other hand, the boxes couldn't switch between being web and DB boxes very fast (you would have to load up all that data) so you couldn't let the boxes choose between those two roles (you'd lose most all your benefit from the expense of the switch).

The choices have to be relatively homogeneous.

Re:Danger Will Robinson (1)

marcello_dl (667940) | more than 6 years ago | (#21732544)

> What I got from reading the article was that they weren't optimizing the 'net at large but the services in one data center.

In fact the internet at large can't be mapped to the behavior of bees. Bees try just to be efficient as possible, they don't need to drive traffic to a particular site.

Re:Danger Will Robinson (3, Interesting)

guruevi (827432) | more than 6 years ago | (#21730776)

If you've ever "herded" bees, you would know that even if you have a full suit, they'll attack you and be successful if you agitate them. So too with us nerds, if we figure out (and it's quite easy) that you're herding us to a specific patch for ad-revenue or whatyouwant, it will sting no matter who you are and what protection measures you have.

We can do better (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21730514)

We should have tracking hounds come in and look for faster routes for traffic, too. And they can have bees in their mouths, so when they bark at the target they shoot bees at it

Oh no, what's next? (2, Funny)

bluemonq (812827) | more than 6 years ago | (#21730516)

Dogs [slashdot.org] with bees in their mouths and when they bark they optimize your local network and find rogue wireless access points?

Did anyone else read that as... (4, Funny)

Overzeetop (214511) | more than 6 years ago | (#21730548)

"Beer Can Optimize Internet Bottlenecks"

I'm not sure what the alcohol has to do with network optimization, but I'll just say right now that I'm for it.

Re:Did anyone else read that as... (2, Funny)

morgan_greywolf (835522) | more than 6 years ago | (#21730618)

Beer? Alcohol? Beer isn't alcohol, it's basic nutrition!

And, sure, beer can optimize networks. Drink enough and watch how fast everything whizzes by you!

Re:Did anyone else read that as... (1)

hattig (47930) | more than 6 years ago | (#21730674)

Well you'd be correct, Waggle Dance [wellsandyoungs.co.uk] .

(Hmm, since when do you have to be legally allowed to drink beer in order to VIEW DETAILS of a beer?)

Re:Did anyone else read that as... (1)

SpaceLifeForm (228190) | more than 6 years ago | (#21731380)

Yes. And I know how it works too.
With enough beers, you forget why you were waiting for
a particular webpage to load, so it seems faster when
you discover that the page is already loaded.

Oh, wait, maybe it's pot that does that. I forget.

What a drunk.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21732460)

More beer cans, more drunk users...drive slowly....surf slowly...whatever.

Power saving data center (4, Insightful)

XPisthenewNT (629743) | more than 6 years ago | (#21730570)

The end of the article comments on how the bee algorithm also allows the data center to save power. It seems like if the data center isn't getting many requests, it can send some servers into power saving standby mode. Much like if there isn't much honey to collect, the bees stay in the hive and save energy.

Are other web data centers able to shut down some servers at night to save power, or is it just because this data center seems configured to allow the servers to each serve any number of websites?

Re:Power saving data center (1)

MBCook (132727) | more than 6 years ago | (#21731370)

I would have liked to know a little more too. My guess is that instead of having 100 servers, most sitting at 2% CPU and sleeping on and off, they could consolidate to 20 servers running at 20% CPU, the rest sleeping basically all the time. Heck, using SNMP they could physically power down the boxes if they had enough free, but I doubt they would do that.

Re:Power saving data center (1)

afidel (530433) | more than 6 years ago | (#21731414)

Any DC running ESX 3.5 on certified hardware can shutdown and powerup host servers on demand, it's a new experimental feature. Depending on your profile you can shutdown during business hours to just essential servers and add capacity for nightly batches or have servers online during the day to handle user demand and scale back for nighttime lulls.

This works great... (2, Funny)

syntaxeater (1070272) | more than 6 years ago | (#21730608)

...in the bee world. Bees don't have an economy and work for no apparent reason other than to advance the hive. If the bees worked out of self gain and received payment for every other bee that went to a particular flower; you'd see tons of waggle dancing. Eventually, the other bees would ignore them completely and all that's left is 75% of the original bee workforce attempting to get in the entrance that is constantly being blocked by dancers.

Re:This works great... (2, Funny)

gudnbluts (1186023) | more than 6 years ago | (#21732792)

Which is why the research failed when conducted by analysing the waggle dances of more intelligent species - in this case strippers.

My Idea (1)

blhack (921171) | more than 6 years ago | (#21730612)

The concept of the individual server is dead to me. What would make sense TO ME would be a san sitting at one logical end of the datacenter, and a big cluster of apache servers sitting at the other...

Lets say that there is a server farm hosting 1000 different websites for people to host pictures of their cats. Most of these people are not going to need a full server for their cat pictures, so lets say we have 100 web servers total. Now lets say that www.omfgmycats.com gets posted to the slashdot frontpage and the server that hosts it starts acting like it just swallowed a bottle of valium. The server goes down and all of the ad revenue that could have been generated by those pageviews is lost! OH NOES!

In MY idea, everything is virtual....in this situation, as more and more requests started coming in; www.omfgmycats.com could have started to eat more and more of the data center's available resources. If conditions allowed for it, www.omfgmycats.com could potentially be consuming 90% of the data center's resources (resources being RAM, processer cycles, power, cooling, bandwidth, etc) with the other 999 cat websites eating a combined total of 10% of the data center.

I don't know, it all makes sense in my head.....to me, we should start looking at big server farms as complete units, and not just the individual parts that make them up.

Does that make sense to anybody else? Or am i describing a type of dynamic clustering that already exists somewhere?

Re:My Idea (1)

Dynedain (141758) | more than 6 years ago | (#21730724)

Some hosting providers already do this. See for example, MediaTemple's Grid Servers [mediatemple.net]

Re:My Idea (1)

MBCook (132727) | more than 6 years ago | (#21731408)

That sounds like what the article was about, as I read it. It's not all that clear (because it was written for non-techies). The bee thing seemed to be about a way to get the servers to dynamically allocate themselves to various sites based on load in a way that will maximize the resources and the revenue (since they were describing a per-transaction system, doing 5 little cheap transactions may be better than 1 big expensive transaction).

Re:My Idea (1)

0racle (667029) | more than 6 years ago | (#21731496)

I'm going to patent you idea as a 'Load Balanced Web Cluster.' I'll make millions off your original idea.

MUHAHHAHAHAHA!

Re:My Idea (1)

blhack (921171) | more than 6 years ago | (#21732078)

A load balanced web cluster usually hosts 1 website. Almost every single major website out there runs on a cluster. What i am talking about is dynamic clustering....as in, you host 1000 websites on that cluster, and when www.foo.com is only getting a hit or two per day, it cowers back down into the corner and only uses just a little tiny bit of the resources.

Re:My Idea (1)

Nazlfrag (1035012) | more than 6 years ago | (#21733264)

Imagine a Beowulf cluster of those. (hint hint)

modeling on biological systems (1)

Don Music (1203840) | more than 6 years ago | (#21730614)

very cool finding ... it's inspiring to see how researchers are looking to adapt biological models to technological systems. I think that this kind of work will be[e], ultimately, very productive for helping us to see around the cognitive and material constraints that we have inherited by working from precursor technologies. I wonder if the same models could be used to improve searching.

Bees... Hum (1)

GodCandy (1132301) | more than 6 years ago | (#21730616)

If bees are the miracle that is going to make my internet faster I have a problem. I am allergic. Hopefully they will stay in the cable cause if bees start popping out of my computer I am going to have to change careers.

bees at GT, eh? (2, Funny)

PurpleButter (928282) | more than 6 years ago | (#21730704)

And by "bees", they clearly mean "Yellow Jackets"

http://ramblinwreck.cstv.com/ [cstv.com]

What's the deal with honey bees? (1)

DJ Katty (1195877) | more than 6 years ago | (#21730750)

As long as the researchers don't converse with a bee-like Jerry Seinfield, then I wish them nothing but luck.

Re:What's the deal with honey bees? (2, Funny)

Applekid (993327) | more than 6 years ago | (#21730878)

Which should be fine so long as they aren't florists with a beestiality complex.

Seriously (1)

nih (411096) | more than 6 years ago | (#21730834)

won't somebody think of the lavae!?

There's got to be a better way (1)

circletimessquare (444983) | more than 6 years ago | (#21730862)

to generate advertising buzz for your website.

Bees?! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21730892)

Beads
Beads?!

There are better carriers than bees... (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21730912)

I prefer pigeons [ietf.org] myself.

In other news... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21730950)

The on going mystery of missing bees has finally been solved!

lol (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21731116)

I see somebody else was watching PBS the other night.

The Future of IT (1)

asiansteev (991271) | more than 6 years ago | (#21730990)

IT Support Guy 1: Well, sure is quiet in here today. IT Support Guy 2: Yes, a little too quiet, if you know what I mean. IT Support Guy 1: Hmm...I'm afraid I don't. IT Support Guy 2: You see, bees usually make a lot of noise. No noise -- suggests no bees! IT Support Guy 1: Oh, I understand now. Oh look, there goes one now. IT Support Guy 2: To the Beemobile! IT Support Guy 1: You mean your Chevy? IT Support Guy 2: Yes.

Does this mean (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21731042)

that when my users complain about slow internet access I can tell them to shake there asses to improve the throughput?

Bees more than inspiring ... (2, Interesting)

foobsr (693224) | more than 6 years ago | (#21731150)

TFA: "Tovey said his collaboration with Seeley demonstrated that the communication provides a "beautiful" feedback loop to prevent one flower patch from being abandoned while another is depleted."

Not that they seem to have ways to resolve aspects of the tragedy of the commons, no ...

"Honey-bee mating optimization (HBMO) algorithm for optimal reservoir operation" ( link [sciencedirect.com] )

They help to improve otherways too.

CC.

stingers? (1)

mozkill (58658) | more than 6 years ago | (#21731318)

does the new type of network have stingers? i hate stingers.

Re:stingers? (1)

TaoPhoenix (980487) | more than 6 years ago | (#21731982)

Don't Sting me, Bee, Don't Sting me!

bees (1)

FudRucker (866063) | more than 6 years ago | (#21731322)

now i know what will speed up the internet, everybody just switch to BeeOS...

Pa...ZING! n/t (1)

ElboRuum (946542) | more than 6 years ago | (#21731854)

Bah dum... psssh!

blurb misleading (4, Informative)

pavera (320634) | more than 6 years ago | (#21731358)

The blurb is very misleading, this isn't about serving ads faster, or even about banner ads reporting their load times. It isn't about routing bottlenecks either, it is about distributed loads, and dynamic resource allocation on the server side.

The methodology used is this:
you have a server farm, this server farm is serving up many different sites. Internal to the server farm is an "ad board" for lack of a better term. When Site A's load spikes it's dedicated server can post an ad to the "ad board" which other servers in the farm can see. Then, servers which are dedicated to other sites, but are basically sitting idle can pick up the ad, say "oh I can help out this site over here" and somehow join the load balancing cluster that is server Site A's content. If necessary, the second (and however many other servers) can also place an ad on the board, getting more and more servers included serving up Site A.

As Site A's traffic decreases, less and less servers will be needed, so they will stop posting ads, and fewer and fewer servers will be serving Site A.

This is about dynamically allocating resources across a large data center/cluster not serving ads on the internet or even about optimal routing of traffic on the internet, instead of having a single server dedicated to serving 1 site, you have many servers which dynamically based on load decide which sites to serve.

Will the Telco's stop at nothing? (1)

DrNASA (849379) | more than 6 years ago | (#21731434)

So, maybe they aren't disappearing at all - the telco's are having them eliminated so the free-netter's can't put the bees to this nefarious use.

http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2007/02/070223-bees.html [nationalgeographic.com]

btw - has anyone made a honeypot joke yet?

it already exists (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21731510)

Hey, it already exists and in widespread use... It's called the ants algorithm.
It was developed by Marco Dorigo at the Free university of brussels http://iridia.ulb.ac.be/~mdorigo/HomePageDorigo/ [ulb.ac.be]

Ants have a similar behavior (5, Informative)

cyngus (753668) | more than 6 years ago | (#21731604)

Ants also do a similar thing. The difference is that they release chemicals as they travel. The more ants that travel the same path, the stronger the trail, the more likely the path will continue to be traveled. This also has some consideration for traveling velocity. All other things being equal, a faster (typically shorter) path will have a stronger chemical signature because more ants will traverse it per unit time. Further, new, potentially better, paths will be discovered on rare occasion that an ant gets lost or for some reasons falls off the established path. In artificial simulations this trailblazing can be amplified by increasing the random chance that from any given network hop, the ant/packet will choose some new direction which may be totally random or may be based on other paths that have already been traversed.

Re:Ants have a similar behavior (1)

davidsyes (765062) | more than 6 years ago | (#21732018)

Now, if only scientists can add bee DNA, with ms' RNG... we could have some hella snail trails...

If I ever see my routers... (1)

ElboRuum (946542) | more than 6 years ago | (#21731818)

If I ever see my routers doing a 'waggle dance', I'm moving to another universe.

I for one.... (1)

emeraldfoxx (1193353) | more than 6 years ago | (#21731850)

Welcome our new buzzing friends. However, I don't see how a bunch of bee's stuck in a tube will increase network performance....I would think it would move slower than honey on a cold day.....(wah wah wah) ;)


there's my 2 bits of dry humor for the day...forgive me /.

"Algorithms" is singular? (1)

siglercm (6059) | more than 6 years ago | (#21732022)

"... a better Internet traffic algorithms."

Huh?

Beers, bottlenecks, WTF? (1)

sonikbeach (939185) | more than 6 years ago | (#21732242)

I can't be the only one who read the title as "Beer cans optimize bottlenecks?" and wondered WTF?

Old old news (1)

MishgoDog (909105) | more than 6 years ago | (#21732520)

It seems every month some new study comes out about bees or ants methods being used to improve routing algorithms - I couldn't be bothered finding the older articles (not being an ant, I failed to leave a scent trail through the internet to the articles - nor being a bee, noone's doing funny little dances to tell me where the articles are), but if there are so many 'breakthroughs'... why don't they just read each other's articles?

Google is going to be pissed (1)

ClosedSource (238333) | more than 6 years ago | (#21732694)

They're supposed to be the ones to optimize this stuff. Oh well, I guess they'll have to come up with some new goof-ball interview questions. "See, there's a swarm of bees passing through a cloud ..."

Gagh. (1)

ScrewMaster (602015) | more than 6 years ago | (#21732732)

Any practical applications of that? Well, apparently ad servers, serving banners across a variety of servers, can report back on the time it took to generate the page.

Can we please have a more productive example of a practical application?

No love for my tag (1)

Dorceon (928997) | more than 6 years ago | (#21732876)

imsickofshakingmybootyforthesefatjerks?

swarming (1)

wikinerd (809585) | more than 6 years ago | (#21732886)

This is part of swarm intelligence [wikipedia.org] research, which is in fact also my own area of academic research (specifically business applications of swarm intelligence and effects on adaptability and implications for non-hierarchical self-organised companies). This journal [springerlink.com] is nice reading if you want to learn more. This conference [computelligence.org] (organised by the IEEE Computational Society where I am a member) is also of interest, but the "classic" workshop is ANTS [ulb.ac.be] . Swarm intelligence is so important that one of the first researchers [wikipedia.org] in the field got an award from the King of Belgium and the European Union. If you are curious enough you can learn even more... swarming has many applications including data mining [springer.com] . There are many business applications, particularly of ant-colony optimisation [wikipedia.org] , but also other techniques (PSO [wikipedia.org] is the one I like most). Interestingly there are whole spinoffs and consultancies making money solely by applying swarming in businesses. In fact this is a good niche for consulting.

How did I chose swarming as my research topic? Well, one day I was in my garden watching my beautiful ants collecting the food I feed them (especial cheese, they enjoy it a lot, but they also like meat and eggs but nothing is better than honey which I give to them drop by drop, although I should note that different species have very different tastes! it has been over 15 years that I feed ants and I like to capture them on camera and watch as they collect the food, it's extremely insightful how they organise around the food, and I like doing various funny experiments with them like placing the food on a level above their nest and watching them to see how they discover it, or placing the food in many locations around the nest in a multitude of distances, or placing some "good" food like meat farther away than some "bad" food like dry nuts or fruits etc to see what they prefer to collect first! the amount of fun and engagement these tiny creatures can give you is amazing). So while watching my ants, I was wondering what I should research in the area of business management. I wanted something to do with engineering or mathematics, but I wasn't sure what exactly would be the best area to research. I knew about swarm intelligence but it didn't came up to my brain at that moment. I also knew of various other ways to combine engineering and science with management, but I needed something I was particularly attracted to it... Coincidentally, I later saw a related slashdot story, so I said "this is it, swarm business applications!", so I credit slashdot for finding me a way to do business research without giving up my preferences for the exact sciences :)

This might work in an ideal system.. (1)

Peter Cooper (660482) | more than 6 years ago | (#21733306)

.. but the Internet is far from ideal. The Internet is not as resilient to attack as it was initially anticipated to be. You can have a single line go down between two sites and even though the sites both have multiple routes in and out, the traffic flow can stop completely due to dumb routing tables, commercial arrangements, and other interests. The Internet is not full of unbiased routers connected together in a mathematically ideal, impartial way. It's more like a social network.. where if two people fall out, communications between friends of those two people can become socially impossible even though it's not physically impossible.

Hrm. (1)

bennomatic (691188) | more than 6 years ago | (#21733354)

Sounds like a good B2B solution, but won't anyone think of the customers?
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