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IXmaps – Interrogating Internet Infrastructure

, Ontario College of Art & Design, Canada ; , , University of Toronto, Canada

EdMedia + Innovate Learning, in Toronto, Canada ISBN 978-1-880094-81-5 Publisher: Association for the Advancement of Computing in Education (AACE), Waynesville, NC


The central task of the IXmaps project [] is to create real-time visualizations of Internet traffic management practices (ITMPs) utilized by networks to control and shape our Internet data communications. This project flows from two distinct areas of research. The first stream involves the technical and artistic development of a custom software platform that provides dynamic, interactive visualizations of the global Internet cloud. IXmaps, allows Internet users to create visualizations (in Google Earth) of the route their data packets take across North America, along with highly detailed information about associated elements such as network carrier interconnect ‘hotels’ and NSA eavesdropping points. The second stream in this research flows from a concentration on data “reachability” – the principle that any end-user can reach any part of the Internet without encountering arbitrary actions on the part of a network operator that might block or degrade transmission. The social effects of gatekeeping is rendered visible.


Paterson, N., Clement, A. & JPhillips, D. (2010). IXmaps – Interrogating Internet Infrastructure. In J. Herrington & C. Montgomerie (Eds.), Proceedings of ED-MEDIA 2010--World Conference on Educational Multimedia, Hypermedia & Telecommunications (pp. 1057-1060). Toronto, Canada: Association for the Advancement of Computing in Education (AACE). Retrieved October 16, 2019 from .