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How Not to Network a NationThe Uneasy History of the Soviet Internet$
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Benjamin Peters

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780262034180

Published to MIT Press Scholarship Online: January 2017

DOI: 10.7551/mitpress/9780262034180.001.0001

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From Network to Patchwork: Three Pioneering Network Projects That Didn’t, 1959 to 1962

From Network to Patchwork: Three Pioneering Network Projects That Didn’t, 1959 to 1962

Chapter:
(p.81) 3 From Network to Patchwork: Three Pioneering Network Projects That Didn’t, 1959 to 1962
Source:
How Not to Network a Nation
Author(s):

Benjamin Peters

Publisher:
The MIT Press
DOI:10.7551/mitpress/9780262034180.003.0004

This chapter chronicles the first three aborted proposals to network the Soviet nation, including military engineer Kitov’s short-lived attempt to share a military network with economists, information theorist Kharkevich’s proposal for a unified communication network for all data signals, and Kovalev’s idea to rationally control the economy. Each network design follows hierarchical, rational, and state-unified principals for mid-century computing. Some attention is also paid to the historical concurrence of cold war networks and the military-industrial-academic complex, including the US ARPANET and SAGE. It is argued that historical “first” claims are often misleading given the complex international research networks that precede national computer networks.

Keywords:   Communication, computing, hierarchy, historical concurrence, information theory, international research networks, national computer networks, rational, unified

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