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What are these stripes in the firewall log data?

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Uploaded on Jan 23, 2010

I took five days or so worth of firewall log data from a us state government agency, and sent ip's to a company called quova; quova took every 40th one and gave me back full location info on it. I then grabbed all activity for those ip's from the logs, and graphed it very simply: count of inbound packets, grouped by country of origin and hour. There are striking patterns in this data. Can someone tell me why (I *think* I know already)?

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