More on 'Number of Tiers' Discussion

Tim Bass (@NANOG-LIST) nanog at
Sun Apr 14 18:03:46 UTC 1996


There is little doubt that the 'existing operational ecology'
is a very suboptimal paradigm (4,5, or whatever-level). It is
suboptimal for IPv4 and extremely suboptimal for IPv6.

Kamoun and Klienrock were specific ) and Tanenbaum in his latest
and greatest third edition agreed ) that a ln(N) hierarchical
superstructure is optimal for large networks.  They also 
conclude that path-length is 'not a real problem', just to be  

BTW, and please do not take this in a negative way and I
offer my apologies for the following diatribe:


Documenting 'the way things are' is nice for 'informational
and historical' purposes.  But, building new paradigms and
structures on top of highly suboptimal and outdated architectures
just added to the problem and does little to move society 
toward progress.

Using the 'information RFC' logic below; we could easily apply
the same logic to humankind.  Crime, hatred, envy, greed, selfishness,
etc. is 'the way human society exists' suboptimal and problematic.
Why strive to build a better 'human network' when the 'informational
human RFC' (IHRFC maybe ;-) clearly documents a very suboptimal

Anyway, as I once had to learn and still learn every day, _opinions_
are not unique and everyone has at least five thousand of them,
making _opinions_ noise with knowledge.  Doing the background research,
going back to the body of knowledge in the field and adding
foundation to vision and opinion significantly decreases the
noise level.  

Just think how effective NANOG or any group could be if all the working
members took the time to learn the body of background knowledge
others have left around as 'clues'.   

Best Regards,


> On Sun, 14 Apr 1996, Tim Bass wrote:
> > The simple idea for illumination in this post is simply; It is not A Good
> > Idea to propose a concrete, structured four-level superstructure 
> > for the Internet  (and we have not begin to look at IPv6, BTW).  
> Not proposing a 4-level hierarchical routing technology.
> Just describing the existing operational ecology using a 4-level metaphor
> as a proposed informational RFC.
> Have a look at if you want to see 
> the rough draft. 
> Comments please.
> Michael Dillon                                    Voice: +1-604-546-8022
> Memra Software Inc.                                 Fax: +1-604-546-3049
>                             E-mail: michael at

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