World Wide Wait | The Economist

The Economist “EVER noticed how long it takes for web pages to load these days? You click on a link and wait and wait, and then wait some more, for the content to trickle in. If nothing has happened after ten seconds or so, your impatient correspondent hits the browser’s stop button followed by the reload key. In desperation, he sometimes loads the link into a second or even a third browser tab as well, and bombards the website’s server with multiple requests for the page. If that fails, he gives up in disgust and reads a newspaper instead.…

A better solution might be to light up more of the “dark fibre” installed during the heady days of the dotcom boom, but left lying unused beneath the streets since the bubble burst nearly a decade ago. That is what a number of securities firms have been quietly doing. When shaving a millisecond off the time needed to execute automated trades can increase revenue by $100m, there is plenty of incentive to build private optical networks with latencies approaching zero.”

Tech.view: World Wide Wait | The Economist.

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