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AlbertJayNock

A pop culture reference I do NOT use in class

Today in my networks class I was talking about the data link layer, particularly about the way it does error control. I had told them about acknowledgments being sent when a frame arrives in one piece, and how the sender resends when it doesn't get an acknowledgment in a timely manner.

In this lecture, I  broached the problem of what to do when the acknowledgment itself is corrupted. I pointed out that it is just susceptible to damage as the regular data frames, and that "just because something has a special purpose doesn't mean it can't be corrupted."

I point this out every semester I teach this class. And every time, I am tempted to add "everyone who has seen The Jerk knows that".

But I don't. The Jerk came out in 1979 and a lot of students might not get it. Some of them might, and that's the problem. I might get in trouble if enough of them actually understood the reference. (For those who don't understand it, it's explained in the Wikipedia article.)


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