A good answer might be:

No. The route to take depends on the current patterns of traffic. Just like the path a letter takes through the Postal system depends on current conditions.


You may recall the advantages of binary representation. Without these advantages, the Web would not be possible.

  1. Binary devices are simple and easy to build.
  2. Binary signals are unambiguous (hence immune to noise).
  3. Binary patterns can be copied flawlessly.
  4. Anything that can be represented with any sort of pattern can be represented with patterns of bits.

The last advantage means that every resource is really a collection of bits. Usually these bits are stored in a file on a hard disk. So a URL must specify: a particular computer and a particular disk file on that computer. A URL must also specify how the bits are packaged when they are transmitted. This is called the protocol. For most web resources the protocol is HTTP (HyperText Transfer Protocol). You do not need to know the details of HTTP.

A non-electronic example of a protocol is the set of rules from the US Post Office that says what size envelopes are expected, where to put the address, where to put the return address, and where to put the stamp. Similar rules are needed for digital communication.


(Thought Question: ) The Internet uses different protocols for different applications. Think of an Internet application that is likely to use a different protocol than that for web page transmission.