With his three-piece suit and trim beard, Vint Cerf looks like Hollywood's idea of the “father of the internet” — or at least, one of its “fathers”.
Along with Robert Kahn, Dr Cerf can claim that title. He helped build the internet's fundamental architecture in the 1970s — creating the transmission protocols that allow computers to talk to each other — when the project was still funded by the military.
Today, ties to the armed forces are causing trouble for Google, where Dr Cerf now holds the only-in-America title of “Chief Internet Evangelist”.
In late May, the New York Times reported that Google's involvement with the US Department of Defence's Maven Program, which aims to use artificial intelligence to assess video, had set off “an existential crisis” internally.
'Chief Internet Evangelist' — Vinton Cerf visits Australia
Back in the 1970s, American computer scientist Vinton Cerf helped design the architecture of the internet along with Robert Kahn. Vint Cerf is now considered one of the “fathers of the internet” and these days he has the title of “Chief Internet Evangelist” for Google. Vint Cerf is currently in Australia and our technology reporter, Ariel Bogle spoke with him yesterday.
The internet past and present: Vint Cerf in conversation with UNSW's Toby Walsh
A “digital dark age” is looming unless a sophisticated regime for curating, preserving and accessing our data is established, the ‘father of the internet’, Vint Cerf, told a packed audience at UNSW Sydney today.
Academics, students and researchers filled Leighton Hall at UNSW to hear Mr Cerf, Google's chief internet evangelist, in conversation with UNSW Scientia Professor of Artificial Intelligence, Toby Walsh.
The event was held in partnership by UNSW Engineering and Google, and the pair spoke about the evolution and future of the internet, the Internet of Things and the challenges of digital security. Mr Cerf is the the co-designer, with Bob Kahn, of the TCP/IP protocols, the underlying communication language and the architecture of the internet.
Father of internet Vint Cerf worried about your old Facebook pics, talking with aliens
That’s the kind of treatment you get from one of the world’s biggest tech companies when you’re one of the ‘fathers of the internet’.