In this technology driven world, we are now moving towards an easier and faster mode of communication between individuals across the globe. In that sense we have seen several missions that are taken over by many organizations. For this advanced digital ecosystem, the concept of Next Generation Internet emerges.
Over the years, the usage of the internet among people has increased rapidly. And with the growing usage of this powerful technology. It is important to make sure that new plans and missions are being implemented to develop it. There is a growing demand for the internet to provide the people the best experience possible with improved services.
We need to move to the next stage. This next stage can only be achieved if the internet usage is faster and easier to use among people. It cannot stay stagnant and stop its development. By this, we mean going to the roots of infrastructure and networks that are being used by the people with the internet to give it a new sense.
1.What Is Next Generation Internet (NGI)?
The Next Generation Internet (NGI) is a collective effort of many organizations and governments to enhance the usage of the internet. With this effort, the shortfalls and limitations which we face now with the internet we have today will be addressed.
With fostering innovative and new services, it aims to revolutionize the internet by providing a faster and secure network. It is a broader concept that is implemented to shape the advancements in the field of internet technology.
So, this is the idea behind Next Generation Internet. But when you look at the programs and missions that are being implemented. We can see a lot of work done by researchers, government, organizations to reshape this technology.
3.Initiatives Under Next Generation Internet (NGI)
2.1 China Next Generation Internet (CGNI)
This initiative is an ongoing project of China in accelerating the application of IPv6 protocol that provides identification, location system and route traffic. This IPv6 provides an end to end data transmission across multiple IP networks. They are having plans on working around Internet of Things (IoT), 5G technology and cloud computing which requires a lot of IP addresses.
CGNI was initiated in 2003 in Mainland China that has tunnel technology, meaning that it can run IPv4 applications in an IPv6 environment. But this is not considered to be the whole of Next Generation Internet (NGI), but a starting point of building a platform for the internet in the future. It offers up to date technical solutions in Internet technology and Broadband strategy of China.
2.2 Next Generation Internet Initiative (NGI)
This initiative was introduced by the US Government in 1996 to revolutionize the internet and improve its infrastructure. It is launched to develop the speed of the internet and build an advanced version of the internet to what existed in 1995.
The program was completed in 2002 with providing enhanced data access, improving bandwidth speeds and built a network structure for better usage of the internet. This initiative had three main goals around which they have worked to improve internet technology.
- Researching on advanced network technologies that had quality of service (QoS), Internet security etc.
- Improving infrastructure and focusing on high performance network connectivity.
- Development of superior applications that operate seamlessly over the internet.
Main thing that this initiative had as a sub goal was to achieve the network speed of terabytes per second and the usage of IPv6. And both of these were also achieved during its course.
2.3 European Commission’s Next Generation Internet Initiative
The European Commission launched its Next Generation Internet Initiative in 2016. The main purpose of it is to shape the future of the internet as an interoperable platform ecosystem that holds certain values that Europe holds. It focuses on promoting values such as privacy, openness, transparency, cooperation and protection of data.
The commission wants to bring in decentralized entities to explore the new paradigms that are possible in internet technology. These values that are mentioned above were given by the European Declaration of Digital Rights and Principles.
3.Goals Of Next Generation Internet (NGI)
3.1 Improve Internet Speed
One of the main goals of this initiative is to provide a high speed internet that has the capacity to handle the higher demands of the internet. From its start to now, we can see the drastic difference in the speed of the internet. As technology improves we can see into the possibilities of providing lightning speed internet.
To achieve this goal, innovations in 5G technology, providing fiber optic cables are some of the ways in which the speed of the internet can be improved. By this we can have higher download and upload speeds which is the ultimate end goal.
This goal of decentralization allows many entities to have the power and control over this technology. In that way there are many networks that exist and work towards improving this technology even better. This provides a way for diverse networks to exist rather than a centralized entity.
Privacy and security is a biggest concern amongst all internet users right now. One of the main goals of this Next Generation Internet (NGI) is to make sure that the users are provided with security and their privacy is protected.
To do that they are working on implementing robust encryption standards, authentic communication channels etc. So, in this way people who are vulnerable from their data being leaked and spread can be reduced. Cyber threats and data leakage can be avoided.
The key objective that all the initiatives of Next Generation Internet (NGI) made are working towards getting this technology as wide as possible. With easy access to the internet, we can get more people into the internet and reduce the digital divide that exists right now.
Digital Divide is the gulf between people who have access to the internet and those who do not. So, by working towards including all sections of people into this digital economy. We can provide all of them with access to essential services in the internet world.
4.Role of Technology Advancements in NGI
The reason for these initiatives to succeed in providing the best internet service possible to the people is the technological advancements in the industry that makes it easy for the researchers, organizations and governments. Some key innovations in the Next Generation Internet that have the power to revolutionize internet usage are mentioned below.
4.1 Internet of Things (IoT)
The Internet of Things connects everyday objects to the internet which enables them to send or receive data. These things that are mentioned here are embedded with software, sensors and other technologies which enables data exchange and automation. It is widely used in sectors like smart cities, transportation, health care etc. IoT transforms UI interactions between machines and humans.
4.2 Blockchain Technology
The Blockchain technology helps in ensuring privacy, transparency and trust in various applications for integration of NGI. This Blockchain is a method that makes the information that is recorded, impossible to be changed or manipulated by the system. It has the potential to grow vastly in areas like supply chain management and decentralized finance. You would be familiar with Bitcoin which also makes all its purchase and sale of coins in its nodes. Making it accessible to all and decentralizing finance.
4.3 Artificial Intelligence (AI)
The advancement in AI makes the process of automation easy and accessible. The AI algorithms will give users an personalized experience based on their usage pattern and optimize network performance. With the data explosion which we are facing right now. AI can be really helpful in managing all that data and help in intelligent decision making. It is also useful in enhancing cybersecurity.
4.4 Edge Computing
Edge Computing refers to the process that brings computation and data storage close to the source of data. This technology reduces latency and improves the response times. In simple words, it brings the processed data to where it was generated which results in greater speeds and volume. Edge computing is helpful for augmented reality, autonomous vehicles and also remote healthcare.
5.Challenges of NGI
5.1 Privacy Concerns
One of the main concerns surrounding Next Generation Internet (NGI) is privacy. With the growth of AI and IoT applications, it raises questions regarding data privacy and surveillance. These innovations are important in development. But there should be a balance in terms of protecting individuals’ data and innovations. There should be more concrete privacy preserving protocols to tackle this challenge.
5.2 High Cost For Infrastructure
Well with these new innovations comes the cost involved in creating them. We have talked about fiber optic cables, 5G network and satellite internet technologies. These require quite a large amount of investments throughout or at least in the initial stage of its implementation. More than the funding, it is important for the stakeholders to coordinate with the organizations and government to succeed in these projects.
5.3 Cybersecurity Concerns
As NGI evolves and develops, the frequency of cyber threats also increases. IoT attacks, ransomware attacks, cloud attacks, blockchain and cryptocurrency attacks are some of the major concerns that need to be addressed. We need to develop robust security measures that help in protecting data and ignoring cyber attacks.
5.4 Digital Divide
Even though the internet users are quite large in number. There is still a large population that does not have access to the internet. So, going forwards it will be difficult to expand the technological advancements when you don’t even provide basic internet connection to these marginalized and underserved communities. Even with improving infrastructure, the main question relies on providing affordable network connectivity to inclusivity.
6.Future Of Internet
In the 1990s we saw the emergence of the concept of the internet and the deployment of what is called Web 1.O. Accessing published content from anywhere was seen as one of the finest developments in mankind. But what was missing there was the interaction part. But that factor was included in the next big revolution happened in the internet.
And as we move into the 2000s, we can see the emergence of Web 2.O. Its iteration of single flow of information between the web publisher to the user. But a lot of advancements came into the picture which made it possible for more interaction and participation of users. Publishing content was made easier and gave the rise of blogs.
Acquiring information is not a difficult task anymore with information sites like Wikipedia and many more on the internet. The concept of search engines came into play. Web 2.O also saw the development of social networking sites which became an integral part of our lives. Web technologies advancement has contributed massively in this generation of the internet that led to more computer languages being introduced.
Web 3.O is now being seen as the new paradigm in the world wide web. It is viewed as a field for creating a decentralized web that represents new generation internet technology. This is said to be a more open, intelligent and autonomous web for the users with a lot to offer. One of the main goals of the Next Generation Internet Initiative is to provide fast internet which is easier in this Web 3.O and customizable too.
In order to create this decentralized environment we use technologies like Artificial Intelligence (AI), Blockchain, Internet of Things (IoT) and Edge Computing for the users to have control over their personal data. However we are not yet in the Web 3.O stage but we are using some of the available tools to build a decentralized web.
With everything said, as we tend to grow in improving the internet technology. There can be a lot of negative aspects to it which can cause trouble. This can cause a disruption in the lives of people. For this we need a collaborative work of governments, organizations, researchers in developing innovative solutions, and a framework to address these questions and improve the Next Generation Internet (NGI).