Danger to actual people, not servers, is more important than anything else, it should go without saying. But how do you warn people about that danger, or find out if they’re OK? Internet, probably! So it was a little worrisome when Sandy started to rip apart the web. It was bad. Bad and fast.
RIPE and Renesys, both giant internet infrastructure entities, have a rundown on exactly what went wrong. RIPE stopped “receiving data from all [traffic monitoring] probes located in New Jersey, and a majority of the probes in New York City on 30 October around midnight UTC.” You can see the storm slap servers down in the GIF up top, with damage blossoming like bacteria. Renesys noted “New York and New Jersey bore the brunt of the damage as the storm progressed,” causing “internet traffic shift away from the city as carriers scramble for alternative paths.”
The internet, let’s not forget, is basically just a bunch of boxes and wires. Delicate. Those things don’t like water, electrical surges and power outages. This is one of the stiffest blows ever dealt to the physical internet, and the bruise will last for some time. [RIPE, Renesys — thanks Andrew!]