One more step towards SkyNet taking over the world?
When the creators of the IPV4 protocol got together and decided to assign every internet-connected device a unique number, they figured 4.2 BILLION numbers would be plenty. They never thought we would hook microwaves, mobile devices and pets up to the interwebs.
Because we’re all such IP hogs, the existing system is predicted to run out of numbers sometime in 2011. Thankfully, someone more clever than you or I decided to tack a few more numbers onto the existing schema:
While IPv4 allows 32 bits for an Internet Protocol address, and can therefore support 232 (4,294,967,296) addresses, IPv6 uses 128-bit addresses, so the new address space supports 2128 (approximately 340 undecillion or 3.4Ã—1038
I’ve never heard of an undecillion before, but it sounds like we have enough IP numbers that we can start putting RFID tags on EVERYTHING. Imagine never losing anything again? Where did all your black socks go? Just look them up on Google Maps!
Can. Not. Wait.
The only thing that disturbs me is that anyone smart enough to improve this system should be able to count from 4 to 5 without much trouble. What the hell happened to IPV5?
Test your IPV6 compatibility
If you’re the kind of person who worries about large-scale changes, there is a handy online test to check your compatibility to the new system: