Map of the underwater Internet

July 11, 2012  |  Mapping

Underwater internet

Nicolas Rapp, for Fortune Magazine, mapped the underwater cables that make the global Internet possible.

If the internet is a global phenomenon, it's because there are fiber-optic cables underneath the ocean. Light goes in on one shore and comes out the other, making these tubes the fundamental conduit of information throughout the global village. To make the light travel enormous distances, thousands of volts of electricity are sent through the cable's copper sleeve to power repeaters, each the size and roughly the shape of a 600-pound bluefin tuna.

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