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Understanding the evolution of Ethernet

First developed by Xerox PARC in the 1970s, and ratified by IEEE as a standard in 1983, the evolution of Ethernet has taken this LAN technology through dozens of specifications.

More than 100 years ago, scientists believed a mysterious substance known as ether served as the medium for light to disperse through space. The notion was ultimately dismissed once physicists discovered that photons act as both particles and waves. But the concept that ether embraces miraculous properties continues to live on today, only this time as Ethernet -- the way through which bits of information travel through complex computer networks.

Created at Xerox PARC in the early 1970s by a team that included Robert Metcalfe and David Boggs, and ratified by the IEEE as a standard in 1983, Ethernet has become the dominant LAN technology. And more than 30 years after its specification, the evolution of Ethernet continues. By 2020, according to the Ethernet Alliance, the technology could have as many as 12 speeds, with six of those speeds approved within the next few years.

Let's take a look at the evolution of Ethernet, and see where its backers believe the technology will be in the decade to come.

Evolution of Ethernet

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This was last published in March 2016

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