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Vint Cerf profile photo. Vint Cerf

the creator of the original internet, said that he set the addressing protocol standards too low back in the 1970s and now only a couple of decades later they must be upgraded. The venue was a lecture to a couple of hundred computer students at Soda Hall on the University of California, Berkeley Campus. He claimed he should be given a little bit of slack for imposing the problem-creating limitation because at the time he created those standards there were less than a dozen computers that needed to be linked. Now there are nearly a billion which each need to have their own unique address, and in a year or so, because of the addressing limitations, we will move into a crisis state because of that lack. The technical problem has already been solved with a new vastly expanded set of addressing standards, but there will be a period of confusion while the new system is being implemented, and the old one is phased out. China is already using these new standards, and so are some of the servers, but all the same we should expect some bumps.

After the lecture and the question period, I went up to the podium, and listened to various computer students ask good technical questions to which he gave very friendly, and informative answers. When it came my turn to ask him a question, I stumbled about a bit and referred to our earlier encounter the day after he had just received the Presidential Medal of Freedom, and our mutual encounter with Buzz  Aldrin. All of these encounters were sort of funny. I asked him about his lapel button, and if it was that one, but he said that it wasn’t that one and that he had a whole drawer full of pins, but didn’t say why he was wearing this particular one.

Vint Cerf Google bag.

This picture is exactly how I remember Vint from our first meeting, except that at that time he was holding his case with his rather flamboyant full Presidential Medal of Freedom regalia.

Our conversation was about my various wind driven power ideas which I want to discuss with the Google people because they are interested in new power sources. Apparently their server farms use up so much electrical power they are locating them near hydroelectric plants. Vint gave me his card and asked me to call him. I am very anxious about this! But, he is such a pleasant person I guess I shouldn’t be. My problem is that this will be a life changing thing for me if it is interesting to them, and all change is stressful. My life at present is so pleasant I hesitate to screw it up. I would like to give them the basic ideas, which I have thought about a quite a bit, and then let them run with them to their logical conclusion — the most massive source of renewable power the world has ever seen.