Once upon a time, Michael Stanton could not have imagined using a cell phone to access the Internet.
A 2019 inductee into the Internet Hall of Fame, Stanton played a key role in the development and launch of what is now known as the National Education and Research Network. He continues to help with the design and deployment of scalable optical networks in Brazil and around the world.
In a 2019 interview, Stanton reminisced about access during the Internet’s early days, which required a wired connection or a fixed radio link, in comparison to today's proliferation of WiFi networks.
“It was not imaginable at that time that it would be so easy,” he said, noting that he now regularly accesses the Internet via a smartphone.
A 2019 Internet Hall of Fame inductee wants to see the Internet continue to facilitate user-friendly innovations.
A native of Togo, Adiel Akplogan helped establish his country’s first TCP/IP connection in the mid 1990s and went on to help start AFRINC, the first regional Internet registry on the African continent. He eventually became its chief operating officer, a role he held until 2015.
In a recent interview, Akplogan said that while he hopes that the Internet continues to develop in a manner that allows for creativity among users, he acknoledges the need for public policies that help facilitate user security.
“How do we make sure we close as much as possible the gap between the development of the technology and the policy making? They need to coalesce at some point to allow the technology to develop, but also to allow people to be confident that this technology…can help solve a lot of problems we have.”
For one Internet Hall of Fame inductee, access to universal broadband is a need on par with the right to clean water.
2013 inductee into the Internet Hall of Fame, Henning Schulzrinne co-developed the key protocols that enable several multimedia applications, including Voiceover Internet Protocol, Real Time streaming and Session Initiation Protocol.
A former Chief Technology Officer for the Federal Communications Commission, Schulzrinne is now a computer science professor at Columbia University.
In a November question and answer piece with Columbia News about the pros and cons of the technology components of the Biden administration’s Build Back Better bill, Schulzrinne said the importance of reliable broadband access was thrown into sharp relief by COVID-19.
“Uneven access to broadband is fundamentally unfair,” he said. “All kinds of day-to-day activities, from applying to jobs to tracking kids’ performance in school, become much more difficult without it. The pandemic made this problem more visible and probably renewed efforts to tackle it at a larger scale.”
The United Kingdom’s Government Digital Services (GDS) is considering turning to an Internet Hall of Fame inductee to help provide its citizens greater control over their personal data when accessing online personal services.
As part of its efforts to develop a new digital identity system, GDS is looking at using personal data storage technology called Solid, which was developed by Sir Tim Berners-Lee’s startup, Inrupt.
Part of the Internet Hall of Fame’s inaugural class, Berners-Lee is the founder of the World Wide Web and wrote the first web client and server.
As reported by ComputerWeekly.com, the agency is weighing several system options and a final decision has not been made yet.
Vint Cerf wants to bring the Internet to the stars – literally.
Part of the Internet Hall of Fame’s inaugural class, Cerf is the co-designer of the TCP/IP protocols. Since 2005, he has been a vice president and “Chief Internet Evangelist” for Google, promoting the web’s capabilities.
In a recent interview with Data Center Dynamics Magazine, Cerf talked about his efforts for more than two decades to expand delay tolerant networking protocols into space, thus creating the backbone for an inter-stellar Internet.
“Well, to the degree we're interested in exploring the solar system and understanding the physics of the world we live in, space exploration is certainly increasingly now considered a valuable enterprise from the scientific point of view,” he said.
“And in order to effectively support manned and robotic space exploration, you need communications, both for command of the spacecraft and to get the data back. And if you can't get the data back, why the hell are we going out there?”