Vint Cerf is an American Internet pioneer recognized as "The Father of the Internet". His contributions have been acknowledged with honorary degrees and awards that include the National Medal of Technology, the Turing Award, the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the Marconi Prize and membership in the National Academy of Engineering.
In the early days, Cerf was a manager for the United States' Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) working to develop TCP/IP technology. When the Internet began to transition to a commercial opportunity during the late 1980s, Cerf was core to the development of the first commercial email system (MCI Mail) connected to the Internet, and was also instrumental in the funding and formation of ICANN, eventually becoming chairman.
Vint currently serves as VP and chief Internet evangelist for Google. In this role, he is responsible for identifying new enabling technologies to support the development of advanced, Internet-based products and services from Google. He is also an active public face for Google in the Internet world and is supportive of innovative projects that are experimenting with new approaches to global problems, including the digital divide, the gender gap, and the changing nature of jobs.
In part 1 of the episode we chat about:
- How he got started in tech & working on the Apollo program
- Working with the earliest computers at IBM and falling in love
- Going back to school PhD at UCLA to study design principle
- Falling in love with networking after working for DARPA
- Views on the importance of state funded technology research space exploration
- The importance of privatization of technology
- Governments role in regulating the internet
- Co-founding the internet and his passion for planning for its growth & standards