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July 15, 1998

IBM AWARDS INTERNET2 GRANTS TO UNIVERSITIES

By CBR Staff Writer

Big Blue has given grants to four universities to create applications for Internet 2. Gallaudet University has picked up funding for its network-based applications for the hearing impaired. Penn State was awarded money for its research into video on demand. North Carolina State’s work on advanced networking technologies and applications and Virginia Tech’s K12 educational videos have also been recognized by IBM. Clearly, all these projects have been singled out for grants because of their commercial potential. Greg Wood, spokesman for Internet 2, says the academic network: has as one of its specific goals moving the new technology being developed by universities into the commercial internet. That’s important to the universities because 80% of their traffic goes offsite. The partnership with IBM means universities can tap the expertise that commercial partners have in making technology widely available, Wood says, this is exactly the cycle we saw in developing the current internet. As an ideal Internet 2 application, Wood cites remote access to instruments at an upper atmosphere observatory in Greenland, A secondary effect of that was letting graduate students look over researchers’ shoulders, letting them see the actual work of science going on. He says good Internet 2 applications are not necessarily those that require a lot of bandwidth. Some are just smarter about how the bandwidth gets used. Voice doesn’t need big pipes but it does need low latency, he explains, data warehousing needs a lot of bandwidth but it doesn’t have the same time-dependency. In general, he concludes, internet software should have some idea what it is doing and how much of the network to claim. If IBM has any say, such software will soon be available to net users everywhere.

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