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A novel form of messaging
  [vote for,

This is my first posting for a while, so I thought I would tackle the subject of message delivery. Despite recent improvements, London remains a difficult and dirty place to get your message across. I propose the following: pigMaileon.

Overview ---------------

This proposal uses composite carbon/lignin technologies, to transmit text and images via a sophisticated airborne delivery system. More specifically, empty photo-film cases, holding a small pencil and paper message, are to be strapped to carrier pigeons. (note: A more comprehensive proposal may follow, for dealing with attachments...)

Routing -------

Messages will be routed using pigeons trained to visit particular places, each location marked by an Intelligent Pigeon (IP) address. The pigeons themselves, would be identified by Minor Aerilon Clipping (MAC) address, where alternate feathers are removed, resulting in a unique code (note: number 0015 has a strong tendency to spiral to the ground in high winds).

The use of IP numbers may not be user friendly, so it is expected that the service will run in parallel with some kind of Dubious Naming System (DNS). The originator of each message can also be determined using the return address, via a protocol known as ARC (Address Return to Coop) lookup. It should also be possible to get quality of service data via Pigeon Is Now Gone (PING) requests.

Scalability & Resilience ------------------------

The system is 'naturally-wireless' and should scale well. We will encounter none of the problems associated with more primitive systems such as network cables and microchips. A Redundant Array of Inexpensive Coops will aid scalability and resilience. Network tuning may also be possible through use of durable messages with variable Tied To Leg (TTL) intervals.

Security --------

Message interception mid-flight is unlikely, but until quantum pigeons are invented, this remains a possibility. Improved security can be provided using anti-tamper, dye-based devices. In this case, a bright purple pigeon may indicate that your message has tampered with. Absolute security can only be provided by encapsulating the pigeon, for example, inside a large domestic cat.

Deployment ----------

Like many new services, this would be piloted in central London. The system will be rolled out as a series of hotspots, starting with Trafalgar Square. High bandwidth is possible in these locations, though packet collision may be more likely. One hopes that, armed with a sufficient amount of breadcrumbs, this service could one day rival mobile texting...

riposte, Jul 01 2005

CPIP (Carrier Pigeon Internet Protocol) http://www.blug.linux.no/rfc1149/
11 years ago, April 1st 1990, rfc 1149 was written. This rfc specifies a protocol for IP over avian carriers, CPIP (carrier pigeon internet protocol) [Minimal, Jul 05 2005]


       They can move mice around with computer chips nowadays, I don't see why we can't use the same technology for 'pigeon switching'.
daseva, Jul 01 2005


       I had a laugh.
Laimak, Jul 01 2005

       This was actually baked in 2001in Norway, after it was first proposed in 1990. (See link).
Minimal, Jul 05 2005

       Come here [riposte], lovely, lovely breadcrumbs for you...
wagster, Jul 05 2005

       Thought this was maybe a process to turn a sow's ear into a silk purse.
AbsintheWithoutLeave, Jul 05 2005


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