Tuesday, August 30, 2005

DNS6

I've attempted to talk about the following, off-and-on, for the last few
years. Here's yet another attempt...

I'm likely to be completely off
the mark with this but the DNS control argument may become a moot point
(or an even bigger issue) with the adoption of IPv6. The U.S. keeps
control of DNS space solely by the pseudo-rules-of-thumb known as
"possession is nine-tenths of the law" and "majority rule". In other
words, control is maintained solely by inertia and continued support of
majority rule.

IPv6 changes the playing field because of the differing
rates of adoption of the technology. A visit to the current 6bone will
show that the ratio of English to non-English sites is much different
than version 4 IP space. There is a slight risk that current
infrastructure managers might attempt to use "majority rule" to start
their own address infrastructure.

I say slight as such an action would
require cooperation on a massive scale by parties who normally are very
contentious, politically different and motivated by normally-opposing
agendas (profit, control, ideologies, etc.).

I believe the situation
to be quite binary. As long as the forces remain below a certain level,
ICANN is likely to retain "control" (a poor term for it) of the DNS
system. This is the most likely outcome.

However, if the level of
contention goes above a certain point, or if opposing forces change the
turn-over point in the equation by cooperating with each other, we might
see a very fractious DNS system. Fortunately, if this occurs, the
condition won't last long (in geological time) as systems do not
normally support unstable conditions for long. Remember:

  • chaos
    requires complete lack of control
  • oscillation requires a very
    specific form of control (feedback) and a permanently unstable
    condition
. Neither of these conditions are tolerated long by
financial or political institutions. Unfortunately for us users, the
corrective controls used by either of these institutions are not
normally that subtle.

This should be quite interesting to watch.
Also, there are probably quite a few "business opportunities" in the
above if you're in the right place at the right time with the right
tools.

Thoughts?