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Clinton Names a Committee to Advise Federal Agencies About the Internet

Source: The Chronicle of Higher Education, February 28, 1997
By Lisa Guernsey

PRESIDENT CLINTON has appointed 19 people to a new committee that will advise federal agencies on developing the Next Generation Internet, which is intended to expand the present Internet's capacity for research and education projects.

Ken Kennedy, director of the Center for Research on Parallel Computation at Rice University, was named one of two co-chairmen of the panel, the Advisory Committee on High-Performance Computing and Communications, Information Technology, and the Next Generation Internet. President Clinton has not yet selected the second co-chairman.


Dr. Kennedy said in an interview that one of the panel's first tasks would be to provide guidance on the Next Generation Internet, a federal project to build a network that will allow faster connections than on the current Internet. The relationship between that project and Internet 2, a consortium of universities that plans to develop a high-speed network to stimulate research, is unclear, he said.

The committee will consider how to pay for the Next Generation Internet and probably will ask leaders of the Internet 2 project to become involved, Dr. Kennedy said.

"In the long term," he said, "the big issue is, How should the government invest its funds in a way to maximize the investment to the taxpayer and the groups involved?"

Leaders of another university project to develop an advanced Intenet, called the Very High Speed Backbone Network Service, or VBNS, will also be asked to participate, Dr. Kennedy said. Eventually, he said, he wants to arrive at a "stable state," with a long-term financing plan for some combination of the three projects.

The panel will also look at how to make the Next Generation Internet secure and reliable, Dr. Kennedy said. "But we will stay away from regulatory issues like encryption-export policy."

Other members of the new panel who work in academe are:

CHING-CHIH CHEN, professor of library science at Simmons College.

DAVID COOPER, associate director of computation at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory.

DAVID J. FARBER, professor of telecommunications at the University of Pennsylvania.

SHERRILYNNE S. FULLER, director of the Health Science Libraries and Information Center at the University of Washington.

HECTOR GARCIA-MOLINA, professor of computer science and engineering at Stanford University.

SUSAN GRAHAM, professor of computer science at the University of California at Berkeley.

RAJ REDDY, professor of computer science at Carnegie Mellon University.

EDWARD H. SHORTLIFFE, professor of medicine and computer science at Stanford University.

LARRY SMARR, director of the National Center for Supercomputing Applications at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

The panel's other members are leaders of telecommunications and computer-engineering businesses, including senior administrators and board members of AT&T Labs, Intel Corporation, MCI Communications, Microsoft, and Silicon Graphics.

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