There are but few Internet highways in Germany. Up until now, the copper-based telephone networks in particular have been exploited to the limits of technological feasibility, while the expansion of fibre-optic networks has progressed only haltingly.
Resource-rich yet poor - for many developing countries especially in Africa abundance of natural resources so far has turned out to be a curse rather than a blessing.
The nuclear disaster of Fukushima has led to a rethinking in Germany. As recently as last year the life span of the nuclear power plants was prolonged. Now a fast nuclear phaseout is within eyeshot. Big challenges await the network operators and the cable manufactures during the upcoming years.
Nothing brings liquids and gases more efficiently from one place to another than pipelines. They are especially demanded as transporters of fossil fuels. Currently, in Germany there are several big pipeline projects under construction in order to supply gas to the country.
Interview with Dr. Roland Nolte - IZT - Institute for Futures Studies and Technology Assessment, Berlin
The German Railways have been stolen overhead contact lines and telecommunication wires worth 15 million euros until the end of last October, as the German newspaper Die Welt reported. Probable reason for these thefts: the copper inside the lines.
Submarine cables have a long-standing tradition. The first one was laid across the English Channel in the middle of the 19th century. However, success was modest. The cable broke after the first message had been transmitted. Today, some 160 years onward, submarine cables are nothing less than the data highways of our globalized world.