I recently finished reading (or rather, listening to) Tubes: A Journey to the Center of the Internet by Andrew Blum while driving across New Mexico and Oklahoma on the last leg of a road trip. At this point I was speeding solo, up to nine hours a day, so it helped to have something to listen to other than the country and right-wing talk that the radio’s scan button delivered to me.
The book chronicle’s Andrew’s attempt to visit the internet, meaning the physical infrastructure that enables the network. The current metaphor of choice may be “the cloud”, but behind that vaporous idea is a lot of equipment that makes a sound when you drop it, along with a lot of personal relationships and history that explain the way it’s structured.
The book made me curious about what my own physical piece of the internet looks like, namely the dedicated server that I rent from pair Networks which hosts mopedarmy.com. I sent an email to the support staff and they kindly sent back photos. So here it is, QS2939, my tiny piece of the physical internet.