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Geoff Huston's keynote

Title:  “NREN Challenges”

The poster child for the NREN effort was the NSFNET in the US in the late 80’s. A small pool of seed funding as an adjunct to high performance computing became the foundation of a billion dollar industry. For a while the dream of the NREN effort was to repeat that runaway success. But repeated success in this area has proved elusive and NRENs have branched out into providing platform support for research activities. I’d like to make the case that NRENs are retiring from the field too early and if NRENs want to be more than a marginal clique purchasing cartel they should re-engage in research into networking. There is much we don’t understand about how to combine computing and communications, and I’d like to look at some of these areas where our knowledge is sparse. We might not be able to repeat the astounding success of the NSFNET but we should be still able to think about an NREN as a platform for research into networking, among other roles, rather than only as a service network for unrelated research.