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The concept of a better nationwide information infrastructure, itself connected to a global information infrastructure, poses yet other concerns associated with interconnecting multiple kinds of networks from multiple kinds of providers to multiple kinds of users offering multiple kinds of services. This construct adds great complexity, increasing the emphasis on scale and architecture and adding in such concerns as heterogeneity of systems, decentralization of control and management, routing, security, and so on. There have been many government, academic, and industry studies under way to identify and clarify these research issues. Although the newspapers are filled with announcements of corporate alliances, new venture formations, and new product introductions more or less linked to the advancement of the nation's information infrastructure, significant advances call for the solution of many technical problems and therefore for a significant research effort.



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