We are going to trace one simple Internet request. It's one that lots of people have made lately. Rachel Margolis, a Time Warner cable subscriber in Brooklyn, wants to watch an episode of House of Cards on Netflix. When Rachel clicks on House of Cards on her TV screen, her request travels out of her apartment on a cable, to a box on the corner, then under the East River to a giant building on the West Side of Manhattan. Think of the Empire State Building, turned on its side. Time Warner's cables run into this building, along with cables of all the big broadband companies around New York, along with cables bringing content from Yahoo, Google, Twitter and many others. This is where all the companies talk to each other. It's called a carrier hotel.
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