Information Sciences Institute
Marina del Rey, California
If you like sun, palm trees, and informa- tion systems research, there’s no bet- ter place than the Information Sciences Institute in Marina del Rey, California.
Sitting in one of the conference rooms or offices on the west side of the Information Sci- ences Institute’s headquarters
in Marina del Rey, California, it’s hard
to ignore the view of the ocean and the
sailboats in the marina. Somehow, ISI
researchers manage to come to the office every day and get something done.
They are too busy designing and building the next generation of information
systems to be distracted by the sun and
palm trees outside.
Part of the University of Southern
California’s Viterbi School of Engineering, the Information Sciences Institute
employs 350 engineers, scientists, graduate students and staff. ISI researchers are guided by the institute’s founding vision: to bridge the gap between
academia and industry by conducting
research that transforms ideas from
theory into practice.
ISI was founded in 1972 to help the
Defense Advanced Research Projects
Agency (DARPA) study emerging technologies related to computer communications. At that time, DARPA was interested in technologies that could be
used for the ARPANET, the experimental communications network that was
the predecessor of the Internet.
ISI played a key role
in the administration
of the early Internet,
and it still hosts one
of the Internet’s 13
DNS root servers.”
Starting with early work on the
ARPANET, ISI participated in the development of many of the core technologies that make up the Internet.
ISI researcher Jon Postel co-authored
many of the key Internet standards, including IPv4, SMTP, and FTP, and was
the long-time editor of the “request
for comments,” or RFC, series that defined many of the core principles and
protocols of the Internet.
In 1983, another ISI researcher, Paul
Mockapetris, invented the domain
name system (DNS), the service that
translates domain names into IP addresses. Today, ISI still hosts one of the
Internet’s 13 DNS root servers.
ISI also played a key role in the administration of the early Internet. In
addition to his role as the RFC editor,
Postel also served as the administrator
of the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA), the entity that manages
IP addresses and top-level domain
names such as .com and .net. ICANN,
the organization that runs IANA and
many of the Internet’s other governing
boards today, is still headquartered in
the same building as ISI.