TELNET/FILE TRANSFER PROTOCOL/FILE COMPRESSION REFLECTIONS:
THE "HIDDEN SIDE" OF COMMUNICATION ON THE INTERNET...

Deep reflection about Internet tools such as these can be a little difficult, because one often does not think openly about these more "hidden" aspects of the Internet.  Telnet, SSH, FTP, and Zipping are things that are done "behind the scenes" on the Internet, and it is unlikely that too many people outside of webmasters and "computer geeks" give much notice to them.  They are important though because they represent some other very useful tools that can further enhance the Internet experience.  I first started using telnet and FTP back when I was a computer science student at the University of Calgary.  We could use telnet to access our personal accounts on the Computer Science departmental server, then use FTP to upload and download files from it.  This was convenient because we could then access our homework, stored in UNIX files, from a computer at home.  I found that telnet-type command-line interfaces would be going the way of the dinosaur back then.  Sure enough, with SSH-based Win-SCP or Fugu the world of Graphical User Interfaces have taken over the old-style command-line world of host-to-host communication.  Now your Windows XP or OSX Mac computer can communicate "directly" with any UNIX server, and you can perform telnet and FTP functions through the ever-expanding world of "click and drag."  Now, one can make easy use of FTP and telnet-style communication on the Internet without any advanced knowledge of it. Although this reality may ...

 ....I use file compression programs often, but usually only to "decompress" files that I have received rather than "compressing" files that I send out.  This is mainly due to the fact that I have had little reason to compress anything I've sent out there, because I have never really sent out a file large enough to warrant Zipping it up first.  As I become more and more involved with Internet applications though, I may be using file compression more often on files I make available on the Web.  WinZip and Stuffit have become commonplace now, these utilities (and their equivalents) are installed in almost every computer out there now, so the use of these utilities is only going to increase.  Obviously Telnet and FTP have some limitations, mainly due to security concerns, but Internet security protocols are continuing to improve, and computers generally are not as vulnerable to attack today as they were even a few years ago.  File sharing, remote server access, and compression techniques are going to continue to play a large role for a long time to come.  Once again for posterity...

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... upset some of the computer "purists" (i.e. - geeks) out there, I would argue that these developments are a good thing for the Internet, because it will allow more people out there to make use of these utilities.  Being able to communicate with, and access files from other servers around the globe allows the Internet to become that much more effective for educators.  Teachers out there can use these protocols to establish a network of resources that can be accessed by anyone, anywhere in the world.  An earnest teacher can have a list of important and useful files stored on a server somewhere, then can access those files whenever they are needed: from work, from home, or even at a professional development conference.  Useful files could include lesson plans, visual materials, audio/video files, attendance records, professional reflections, test banks, assignment templates, and so on.  Teachers can help out fellow colleagues by establishing anonymous FTP sites to share information.  As I have said, the biggest impact the Internet can have on our society is in its ability to network minds and pool resources.  If more teachers out there could realize the possibilities, more teachers would be able to enhance the quality of their teaching by having yet another method that is able to access a broad network of important resources out there. Telnet, SSH, and FTP simply provide another means in achieving that end.  Likewise, file compression is also an important part of the Internet, because it helps to save precious bandwidth in cyberspace, and as files get larger and more information becomes available, keeping files sizes small helps keep the global network running efficiently, making it easier and convenient for the people who use it....---------------------------------------
reflections.jared.edit535.now
reflections.jared.edit535.now

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