Can internet be mapped?

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Creating a map of the internet is difficult due to its rapid growth, private servers, and limited computing power. Some attempts have been made but only show certain aspects. The map is also difficult to read due to its complex structure. It is unlikely to exist until computing technology advances.

A map of the Internet would be unlikely with current technology. The internet is growing rapidly, and an accurate internet map should grow just as fast. This, combined with the possibility of private servers that cannot be accessed, makes an internet map look like the stuff of science fiction.
Despite this, several attempts are underway to create a map of the Internet and some have even met with some success. Any current attempt to map the Internet, however, has only been able to show a few things, such as the popularity of various Internet service providers (ISPs). None shows every host and path through which data can travel.

An internet map is also quite difficult to read, because it involves creating a two-dimensional diagram of a two-dimensional plane that is superimposed on a three-dimensional plane. Therefore, some attempts to make a map of the Internet show a two-dimensional drawing, while others are pseudo-three-dimensional. This means that even if a person cannot read one Internet map, he or she may be able to read another.

Even attempts to map the Internet are limited by computing power. To map the paths along which data can travel, it would be necessary to trace every signal that enters a server and then trace back to its source. This requires a lot of processing power, much more than the average desktop computer has. This is another reason why current technology limits the ability to map the Internet. The only kind of computer powerful enough to create an actual map of the Internet would be a quantum computer, something that is mere theory in all but the most rudimentary applications.

In short, while a map of the Internet is theoretically possible, it cannot exist until computing advances beyond the relatively low level it is currently at.

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