An Internet Father wants to be a Dad again

By Mark Baard

David Clark, who was one of the leaders of the development of the Internet in the 1970s, is working with the National Science Foundation on a plan for a whole new infrastructure to replace today’s global network. The NSF aims to put out a request for proposals in the fall for plans and designs that could lead to what Clark called a “clean slate” internet architecture. Those designs, Clark said, could be tested on the National LambdaRail, the nationwide optical network that researchers are using to experiment with new networking technologies and applications.

Two NSF program directors in the agency’s Networking Technology and Systems program refused to speak on the record about the $200,000 grant the agency gave Clark to explore his “clean slate” internet idea. Nor would they comment on a broader initiative taking shape at the NSF, of which Clark said his research is a component.

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