FOOD FOR THOUGHT: A server farm in your house

This isn’t one of those things where it used to take a computer the size of a city block. In fact the first web server was a NeXT computer that was hilariously large by today’s standards but was still smaller than a dorm-sized fridge. That doesn’t make it any less amazing that you have several full-featured web servers in your home right now.

Let’s start with your router, an amazing piece of equipment by itself considering all it does. If you type in its address (usually http://192.168.1.1 or http://192.168.0.1) you’ll see that it serves up web pages that give the status of your network. Most routers run the same Linux operating system that powers big web sites.

What about your printer? If it’s wireless or networked, it probably has a web page too that gives you information about your ink levels.

Hidden in each smartphone or tablet that runs iOS or Android is a web server too, but it’s usually turned off.

If you have a DIRECTV Genie or Genie 2 it’s got a very simple web server built in, and most streaming boxes do as well. Your home is probably jam packed with web pages and you didn’t even know it… it’s quite possible that there are six or seven web servers in your home and that’s the size of a small hosting facility. Holy moley!