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.