It was exactly 3724 days ago today, or 10 years, 2 months, and 10 days ago today that Weird Al Yankovic proclaimed that It’s All About the Pentiums. I wonder if he knew that when he proclaimed:
My new computer’s got the clocks, it rocks
But it was obsolete before I opened the box
You say you’ve had your desktop for over a week?
Throw that junk away, man, it’s an antique
Your laptop is a month old? Well that’s great
If you could use a nice, heavy paperweight
that the trend was only just starting and that ten (10) years later it would still be about the latest generation of the Intel Processor (the Core 2 Duo), that your database would still be a disaster, that windows would still take a “day-and-a-half” to boot up, or that, regrettably, supply chain managers would still be king of the spreadsheets?
I’m wondering because 3724 happens to be the RFC on The Rise of the Middle and the Future of End-to-End: Reflections on the Evolution of the Internet Architecture. The end-to-end principle just happens to be the core architectural guideline of the internet. Addressing concerns of openness, reliability, robustness, user choice, and ease of new service development, the end-to-end principle, which was originally a question of where not to put functions in a communication system to insure that applications could survive partial network failures, is still as relevant as it ever was. While not a standards proposal, like most RFCs, it put forward some good questions as to how the internet should evolve, questions which are becoming increasingly important with the rapid proliferation of the internet across a wide range of wired and wireless devices on which you will want to seamlessly access your supply chain applications.
Simply put, you’re going to want to be able to run your apps whether you’re working on your server, working on your desktop, working on your laptop, or working on your mobile, and you’re going to want to be able to do it using an open architecture built on open standards. This is because you don’t want to be spending thousands upon thousands of dollars for proprietary products that use proprietary APIs on each platform that do nothing more than convert your data from proprietary format A to proprietary format B so your mobile can talk to the server. You just don’t.
So remember, it’s all about the pentiums, baby.