Monday, October 03, 2011

Rheology Analogies for Computer Networks

I ran across this company who's name is based on a rheological concept: "Thixotropic Networks".

From their homepage, there is a tab that describes thixotropy - the rheological concept - using the standard ketchup model. As for a computer network, they then make this analogy:
"At Thixotropic Networks, this describes our philosophy of computing services: stable, secure, and reliable, but still able to react to changing needs, and reconfigure themselves to solve the problem of today."
I can kinda see the connection. Personally, I think we all need a shear-thinning network, one where the more you use it, the faster it goes. This is the opposite approach taken by the ISP server for my home internet, which has a "speed boost" (or some such nonsense) where the initial downloads are fast but then start slowing down. Continuing the rheological analogies, this would be a shear-thickening network. The worst of course, would be a rheopectic network, one that becomes more and more rigid despite the need to "react to changing needs, and reconfigure themselves to solve the problem of today".

A thixotropic network? Not a bad idea.

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