Little GLORIAD, an acronym for Global Ring Network for Advanced Application Development, will go into service in January 2004 and will link computers in the Northern Hemisphere with data flows of 155 million bytes per second.

The first traffic will flow through the system on January 5, but the opening ceremony will be held in Beijing on January 12.

Each of the three countries are spending about US$3 million each to fund their portions of the ambitious project. When the gates open, scientists from the three nations will be able to communicate at incredibly fast speeds.

An even faster network is already planned to begin later next year, and that net will move data at 10 gigabytes per second, 60 times faster than the Little GLORIAD.

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