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Data networks

In this video, we give an overview of data networks and a conceptual illustration of The Internet.

Watch the video for an overview of data networks.

The Internet

Below is a condensed conceptual illustration of The Internet.

There are several individual networks – academic, business, home, and mobile networks, using different communications technologies (wired and wireless), and interconnecting to the Internet, “through” the network providers.

Any end-user of any network can reach out to resources on any other network so long as it is permissible for access. Take, for example, you accessing your University resources from where you live, using your broadband connection with your provider. You can also access the resources at the university when you are on a holiday abroad. This is possible through the Internet.

This is the interconnectivity landscape in which our context is based.

A diagram showing home networks, mobile networks, academic networks and business networks, all connected through network providers(Click to expand)

Functional components

Now, take a look at the functional components of a typical ICT system as well as that of the Internet. You will notice that they are quite similar.

There are several common elements:

  • Hardware
  • Software
  • Data/information
  • Services provided

It is such because the Internet is the infrastructure that interconnects ICT systems. The commonality of their functional structure is important to note in our context.

A diagram comparing ICT System components with the component of the internet. Many of these are similar. ICT Systems components include Cloud, hardware, software, services, networks, internet access and data. Internet components include services, users, hardware, software, information, network devices and network links(Click to expand)

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