#webperf We often lay the blame for application performance woes on the nebulous (and apparently sentient-with-malevolent-tendencies) "network". But the truth is that the causes of application performance woes are more often than not related to the "first*" and "last" mile of connectivity. That's why optimization is as important, often more so, than acceleration. And yes, there is a difference.
* That whole "first mile" thing isn't the network as we generally see it, per se, but the network internal to the server. It's complicated, engineering things. Trust me, there's a bus over which data has to travel that slows things down. Besides, the analogy doesn't work well if there isn't a "first" mile to match the "last" mile so just run with it, okay?