White light sighted

Many many years ago I read in some high end Optics Society journal about what I came to think of as “the white light.” The article argued that if one extrapolated the patterns in communication there would come a time when the cost of routing information around the network vs. the cost of broadcasting everything everywere would cross and at that point the end points on the net would see everything and just pluck out just the bits intended for them.

Well today I see an early example of just this idea. Here being used to provide optical interconnect for a multiprocessor.

Back in the 70s, when I last worked on multiprocessor interconnects, I sketched out something like this; but the response times on the optical  receivers  were too slow and the complexity of the rest of the supporting junk was way high.  I wonder if you could hack a modern digital camera’s control electronics along these lines in some fun way.  This kind of thing would be a good project for some MIT 6.111 students.

2 thoughts on “White light sighted

  1. James

    “picking up the bits intended for them” reminds me of CDMA, which in turn reminds me of the single-pixel camera.

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