One of the primary contributors to the technological foundations of today’s Internet, Van Jacobson joined PARC in 2006 as a Research Fellow to lead its content-centric networking research program.
Van’s algorithms for the Transmission Control Protocol (TCP) helped solve the problem of congestion and are used in over 90% of Internet hosts today. Widely credited with enabling the Internet to expand in size and support increasing speed demands, Van helped the Internet survive a major traffic surge (1988-89) without collapsing.
Van has co-written many network diagnostics tools (traceroute, pathchar, and tcpdump) that are widely used by the Internet research and development community. Besides authoring dozens of seminal, Internet-defining documents, he also helped lead the development of the Internet Multicast Backbone (MBone) and the popular Internet audio and video conferencing tools (vic, vat, wb) that laid the groundwork and defined the standards for current Internet VoIP and multimedia applications.
Prior to joining PARC, Van led networking efforts as Chief Scientist at Cisco Systems and later Packet Design Networks. He also led the groundbreaking Network Research group at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and its collaboration with the Computer Science Research Group at the University of California, Berkeley.
Van’s industry honors include the prestigious ACM SIGCOMM Award (2001) for outstanding lifetime contribution to the field of communication networks — especially his contributions to protocol architecture and congestion control. In 2002, the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) honored Van with the Koji Kobayashi Computers and Communications Award for contributing “to the understanding of network congestion,” and for developing congestion control mechanisms that enabled the “successful scaling of the Internet”. Van was elected to the United States’ National Academy of Engineering in 2004.