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IP: "The Internet 1998: The end of the beginning"

From: [email protected]
Subject: IP: "The Internet 1998: The end of the beginning"
Date: Tue, 06 Oct 1998 05:57:25 -0500
To: [email protected]

Source:  Business Today

BT EXCLUSIVE: The Internet 1998: The end of the beginning 

by Bill Burke/BusinessToday staff 

The Internet is not going away, but it is about to undergo a facelift.

With the demand for faster, more reliable data communications access
growing, some technology pundits are predicting the death of the Internet.

Radio took 38 years to reach an audience of 50 million people, according to
Sprint CEO William T. Esrey. The Internet has taken only four years to
reach that same audience. Despite that growth, it has reached critical mass
and is due flare out in the near future, he said.

"The Internet is going away," Esrey said. "The Internet will be replaced
with other networks."

But according to a panel at the Wall Street Journal Technology Summit this
morning, that demise is being prematurely reported.

"One of the beauties of the Internet is that it can change in several
places simultaneously," said Robert Metcalfe, vice president of Technology,
International Data Group. "There are five or 10 next generation Internets

However, there are threats to the growth of the new Net. The first 25 years
of the Internet has been characterized by governmental subsidies and
community cooperation. Recently, the financial payoff has led to heretofore
unseen posturing and political infighting -- something that could threaten
the development of future networks, according to John M. McQuillan,
president of McQuillan Consulting.

Add in new technologies, however, and the next generation begins to take

"I think where we are with the Internet where we were 100 years ago with
electricity," said Paul R. Gudonis, president of GTE Internetworking.
"We're still in the early stages of this."

Gudonis said the Internet is about to become more applications-based,
forcing businesses to re-think their approach.

"Business is going through an adoption cycle," he said. "Now we're seeing
the second coming of re-engineering."

Changes will come in how corporations go about prospecting, learning how to
sell, and "totally revamping how they actually do business."

As a result, companies are preparing for the next incarnation, building a
massive new backbone for each new network, and preparing for, among other
things, streaming video.

"Everybody's getting ready for video," Gudonis said. "Everybody's going to
go camera crazy, I think."

But the bottom line is that capitalism has met the Net, and it will not be
the same.

"Where we are, is at the end of the beginning of the Internet," McQuillan
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