Re: Optical Networking?
"Wasn't that the plan originally way back when, Intel were pushing optical fibre cables as a new Ethernet standard but due to the cost dropped the idea, so now they are back trying again?"
Intel's original intent was a cable technology called Light Peak. It had enormous 'gee whiz' appeal at the time, to the point of euphoria. But it wasn't realistic, at least at that time, to combine an optical cable with a wire cable. Optical provided fast data transfer over long lengths. But the wire cable was wanted for device control and transferring power to external devices. Despite the hyper-hype, Light Peak was killed off and a compromised called 'Thunderbolt' was created instead, an entirely wired solution with at least an improvement in speed.
Meanwhile, using optical for fast data transfer has remained useful. This new compromise again integrates the ability to use optical cable.
Here are a couple articles of interest. The first is about Light Peak from 2010:
The second article is about the resulting Thunderbolt compromise in 2011: