Dai Davies: Well, good afternoon ladies and gentlemen. It is indeed a great honor and a privilege to stand here and address you. It is really remarkable, looking back over twenty‐three years working in the Internet environment.
When I started in 1991, I was a hired gun. I was brought in to create a network, a pan‐European network, and I was going to do it for three years. Twenty-three years later I’m still involved in the same thing. What actually happened was it wasn’t just a project, we created an organization. That organization is DANTE, and DANTE has been responsible for six generations of pan‐European research Internet. And we moved from 64 kilobit technology to 100 gigabit technology in that period of time.
I would particularly like to mention Howard Davies, was co‐general manager with me and founding general manager of DANTE. And the DANTE team. And also I think it’s important to put it in a funding context as well. Because the European Commission has given us tremendous support in terms of developing both the European footprint, and making Internet technology available both from a research perspective, but also to support researchers in other disciplines.
Finally, I look back at the very freewheeling spirit of development, which is really what the Internet is all about. And I think it is vital to preserve that very open development environment which the academic community has helped so much to contribute. Corporatism has a place in the Internet, but ultimately it’s about individuals and individual creativity. And that spirit which was there twenty‐three years ago is still there today, and is what we must preserve. Thank you.