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My Scale or your Meter? Evaluating Methods of Measuring the Internet

G. Giacomello and Lucio Picci

Working Papers from Dipartimento Scienze Economiche, Universita' di Bologna

Abstract: Measuring the Internet - the size of its infrastructure, how many people use it, and their prevalent uses - is of obvious interest. However, the wealth of available quantitative information regarding the Internet so far has fallen short of satisfying the many needs that it would fulfill. We set the problem of measuring the Internet into a framework that allows us to derive insights on the peculiar nature of the Internet as a piece of infrastructure. After reviewing the current measures available, while drawing a distinction between the object of measurement, and the types of institutions involved in it, we provide some indications on what data should be trusted more, and how better measures of the Internet could be obtained.

Date: 2002
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