Influencers | episode 334

Vint Cerf, 'Father of the Internet' and Chief Internet Evangelist at Google

Widely known as one of the “Fathers of the Internet,” Vint is the co-designer of the TCP/IP protocol and the architecture of the Internet. Vint was instrumental in the formation of ICANN, and served as Chairman from 2000 through 2007. Vint was also the founding president of the Internet Society, and served in executive positions at MCI, the Corporation for National Research Initiatives, and the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency. March 26, 2018

Among other topics, Vint discussed the following issues with Metis Strategy:

  • Vint’s early work pioneering what would become the internet, including his time at UCLA, Stanford, and DAPRA
  • Early milestones that hinted at the vast implications of/commercialization potential for the internet, such as networked electronic mail, document production and sharing, hyperlinking, web browser, and eventually, the iPhone
  • The internet as the common thread unifying Vint’s work across his many spheres of influence, such as academia, the public sector, the private sector, and not-for-profits
  • Vint’s role as Google’s Chief Internet Evangelist, where he works with developing economies to create the conditions for internet infrastructure to be built
  • The unintended consequences of the global infrastructure that is the internet, such as misinformation and spam, and why international policy collaboration is a necessary part of the solution
  • Vint’s work as Chairman of the People Centered Internet (PCI), which focuses on materially improving the value of the internet to the growing, connected population. For example, PCI may ensure information is available in local languages, or promote services that improve economic stability, safety, or health.
  • How recent natural disasters such as the California wildfires and hurricanes in the Caribbean have led PCI’s to also focus on the role of internet infrastructure in disaster relief
  • The double-edged sword of technology, and the responsibility that engineers have to consider the ethical implications of the technology they are developing
  • Eye on the trends: cyber-physical systems, making IoT ecosystem a safe and trusted environment

Vint is currently Google’s Chief Internet Evangelist, a flexible role that allows him to support the development and continued spread of the Internet, as well as the Chairman of the People-Centered Internet (PCI), an organization he co-founded to ensure that internet access brings measurable benefits to the world.

Vint has received numerous awards for his contributions to the Internet, including the US Presidential Medal of Freedom (awarded by President Clinton), US National Medal of Technology (awarded by President Bush), the Queen Elizabeth Prize for Engineering, the ACM Turing Award, the Prince of Asturias Award, the Charles Stark Draper award, Officer of the Legion d’Honneur, among many others. Vint has received honorary degrees from 29 academic institutions around the world.

Vint received a Bachelor of Science in Mathematics from Stanford University, a Master of Science degree and Ph.D. Computer Science from UCLA.

The World Class IT principles in yellow were the focus of this interview

  • 01 1- People
  • 02 2- Infrastructure
  • 03 3- Project and Portfolio Management
  • 04 4- IT & Business Partnership
  • 05 5- External Partnerships

From strategy to implementation

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