The Internet really is the new frontier. Everything cutting edge seems to have something to do with it. By and large, it has become my primary workplace. There, you can post, blog, tweet, chat, ping and google. Oh and work, of course.
But the Internet also is the place where rules and common sense are violated several times every day. You can spam, crack, hack, DDOS, flood, infest, and troll.
For some reason, hi-tech often implies meaningless. Just like art. Sometimes, it doesn’t matter. After all, something beautiful or funny doesn’t have to make sense. But some decisions just seem quite dumb to me.
One example, because it’s getting worse these days : advertisement.
Internet is center-less. That’s what’s cool about it : you have mirrors, load balancing, redundancy, etc… The information is more often than not at the tip of the fingers. Every news/information related media in the “real” world has to get money by selling advertisement space. I understand that, it’s the price to pay.
On the Internet, ads generate money as well. The problem is for the (paying) advertiser to know that the investment is worth it : how many people saw the ad? How many followed through on the ad and actually bought something? That information is what the advertiser pays for. The goal is to show the ad to a maximum of people.
To get this number, you have two choices : you trust the website (that’s the way it works in printed papers… you know roughly the numbers, but they are unverifiable), or you don’t. The way things go these days, I guess the advertisers don’t trust the websites. The ad is hosted on their own servers, which provides an accurate count of the views/clicks.
But it also means that N sites (N being potentially big) try to access simultaneously the same ad, thus slowing down every one of them at the same time. And you can be trying to load a light page (say, mostly text), on a fast line (most DSL providers here work around 2Mbits/s throughput), and wait one damn minute for the page to actually load.
Would it be so hard to have a delayed mechanism that stores all the relevant data on the website’s server (signed, encrypted, whatever) and uploads them to the advertiser every day or week while getting the new ad contents? That way, the website would be fast 90% of the time, instead of 10…