On April 23, 2012, the Internet Society inducted Internet pioneers and luminaries from around the world into its inaugural Internet Hall of Fame. Recognizing Internet leaders from nine different countries, including one Nobel Prize Winner, one Royal Knight and two Presidential Medal of Freedom recipients, the Internet Hall of Fame is an annual awards program that has been established by the Internet Society to publicly recognize a distinguished and select group of leaders and luminaries who have made significant contributions to the development and advancement of the global Internet in three categories: Pioneers, Innovators and Connectors. This slideshow, the first in a series of two, shows the 2012 inductees into the Pioneers Circle category. Group photo of 17 inductees taken at Internet Society’s annual Global INET event in Geneva, Switzerland, where the first-ever Internet Hall of Fame winners were announced. Back Row, left to right: Brewster Kahle, Daniel Karrenberg, Randy Bush, Vint Cerf, Philip Zimmermann and Tan Tin Wee.Front Row, left to right: Nancy Hafkin, John Klensin, Kilnam Chon, Elizabeth Feinler, Leonard Kleinrock, Lawrence Roberts, Steve Crocker, Raymond Tomlinson, Larry Landweber, Mitchell Baker and Toru Takahashi. Photo credit: Stonehouse Photographic/Internet Society
The Pioneers Circle recognizes individuals who were instrumental in the early design and development of the Internet; four of the inductees, Vint Cerf, Robert Kahn, Leonard Kleinrock and Lawrence Roberts are known as “Fathers of the Internet.” Paul Baran, Danny Cohen, Steve Crocker, Donald Davies, Elizabeth Feinler, Charles Herzfeld, Peter Kirstein, John Klensin, Jon Postel and Louis Pouzin were also honored for their work advancing the global Internet.
Baran, who died at the age of 84 in March 2011, invented packet-switching techniques that can be credited with playing a key role in the development of the Internet, invented the first metal detector and was honored with the IEEE Alexander Graham Bell Medal and National Medal of Technology and Innovation, and was inducted into the National Inventors Hall of Fame.Â
A “Father of the Internet,” Cerf is the co-designer of the TCP/IP protocols, chief Internet evangelist for Google, and chairman of the board of the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), among many other prominent civic, industry and educational institutions. He also holds the U.S. National Medal of Technology, the ACM Alan M. Turing award and the Presidential Medal of Freedom.
Cohen developed the first real-time visual flight simulator on a general-purpose computer and the first real-time radar simulator, and was the first to implement “packet-video” and “packet voice” (Network Voice Protocol)—demonstrating the first application of packet switching to real-time applications—when he adapted the visual flight simulator to run over the ARPAnet.Â
Crocker, CEO and co-founder of Shinkuro Inc., organizer of the Network Working Group (a forerunner to the IETF) and initiator of the Request for Comment (RFC) series through which protocol designs are documented and shared today, has been involved in the Internet since its inception as part of the team that developed ARPAnet protocols that laid the foundation for today’s Internet.
Davies, who died at the age of 75 in May 2000, was one of the inventors of packet-switching computer networking. He coined the term “packet” and was part of the team at the National Physical Laboratory (NPL) laboratory led by Alan Turing, whose design eventually led to the Pilot ACE computer, one of the first four or five electronic stored-program digital computers in the world.
Feinler pioneered and managed first the ARPAnet and then the Defense Data Network (DDN), Network Information Centers (NICs) under contract to the Department of Defense (DOD). She was part of the group that developed the first Internet “yellow-” and “white-page” servers, the first query-based network host name and address (WHOIS) server Â and the top-level domain-naming schemes of .com, .edu, .gov, .mil, .org and .net, which are still in use today.
As director of the Advanced Research Projects Agency (ARPA) in the 1960s, Herzfeld oversaw the decision for the creation of ARPAnet, and was vice president for research and technology at ITT, director of defense research and engineering in the Department of Defense, senior consultant to the science adviser of the president and a member of the Chief of Naval Operations Executive Panel since its formation in 1970.
A “Father of the Internet,” Kahn co-invented TCP/IP protocols; demonstrated the ARPAnet by connecting 20 different computers at the International Computer Communication Conference; conceived the idea of open-architecture networking; coined the term National Information Infrastructure (NII), which later became more widely known as the Information Super Highway; and holds of the U.S. National Medal of Technology, the ACM Alan M. Turing award and the Presidential Medal of Freedom.
Kirstein started the first European ARPAnet node with transatlantic IP connectivity in the early 1970s, and has been involved ever since with European and transatlantic collaborations on IP networking research with industrial and academic partners, piloting developments in multimedia, network management, and directory and security applications in the Research Community in Europe and elsewhere.
A “Father of the Internet,” Kleinrock pioneered the mathematical theory of packet networks, the technology underpinning the Internet; ran the laboratory containing the UCLA Host computer that was the first ARPAnet node in September 1969; has published more than 250 papers and six books; is currently a Distinguished Professor of Computer Science at UCLA; and holds the National Medal of Science, the highest honor for achievement in science bestowed by the president of the United States.
Klensin was involved in the early procedural and definitional work for DNS administration and top-level domain definitions, contributed to language standardization efforts for more than 30 years, and co-created the Network Startup Resource Center, which helped countries establish connections with FidoNet, UseNet and when possible the Internet.
Postel, who died at the age of 55 in October, 1998, created the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA), contributed to fundamental Internet protocols TCP/IP, SMTP and DNS, and was the “Request for Comment” (RFC) editor for almost three decades driving the open consensus process that characterizes Internet development today.
Currently Project director with EUROLINC, an association promoting the use of native languages on the Internet, Pouzin has contributed to the design and implementation of computer systems such as CTSS, the first large time-sharing system at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and the CYCLADES computer network and its datagram packet switching network, from which TCP/IP was derived.
A “Father of the Internet,” Roberts designed and managed the first packet network, the ARPAnet (the precursor to the Internet); was chief scientist of ARPA responsible for designing, funding and managing the radically new communications network concept of packet switching; and founded five startups: Telenet, NetExpress, ATM Systems, Caspian Networks and Anagran.