The world of networks

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The world of networks

In this chapter, we give a summary of the world of networks: We will discuss the following points:

  • The role of computer networks in our daily life

  • Explain the properties and elements of a system.

  • Define the keywords and diagrams used in this course.

  • Explain what a converged network is

  • Give a brief history of computer networks.

This chapter is critical because some of the concepts learned in this chapter help understand the rest of the course.

The role of networks

The need to communicate is human. Communication has evolved over the years, from petroglyphs to more complex forms. The following diagram describes this development appropriately.

The development of computer network has led to modern communication methods. Since the return of the first email in 1965, the message had published.

 We are no longer limited to personal communication. And with the Internet, the world is more connected than ever.

Computer networks are not only responsible for communication, but our entire career has changed. The way we work has changed significantly in other ways.

So we use computer networks:

  • Business - online banking, e-mail, e-commerce.

  • Entertainment - Online Movies, Online Games.

  • It is, therefore, clear that networks play a crucial role in our lives.

Elements of a network

To understand networks, we need to understand the elements of a network. Four main elements define the functioning of communication over networks.

Messages or pieces of information transmitted from one device to another - these can be packets or frames.

One way to connect these devices - a medium that can carry messages from one device to another - such as a mobile device. Like copper cable, fiberglass, among others.

Network devices that exchange messages - such as IP phones, computers, servers, and routers.

Convergent network

The world of networks has developed over the years — we discover more and more ways to use computer networks. Communication over existing systems is not limited to static data transmission, but new applications such as teleconferencing, video, news, and other multimedia applications are available on computer networks.

Years ago, communication was segmented. There were different networks for each application.

  • For the voice, there were telephone networks,

  • For video, there were television and cable providers.

  • For data, there were Internet service providers.

However, all these services can provide on the same network, which has attributed to the growth of computer networks. Therefore, a converged network is a network in which all these services; Data, voice, and audio provided on the same systems.

This Medium virtually eliminates the need for multiple service providers for each of these services.

Other concepts

Fault Tolerance and Scalability: This means that networks must be able to recover downtime or other failures and expand as needed.

Quality of service: This is a measure implemented in networks to ensure the optimal functioning of services provided in a converged network. For example, communication would be mediocre if a system containing only video and no audio when a business executive is in video conferencing.

Security: The network must protect from unauthorized access intrusions. They would ensure effective communication and the maintenance of confidentiality, integrity, and availability of information.


This introductory chapter is designed to help you understand the importance of communication over networks. These concepts are crucial to understanding this course. We learn the basics of communication in networks. In the next chapter, we will see how the connection with layer models works and get to know some additional concepts.