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Re: More on Postel

Damn. Talk about a blow to the heart.

Where can I find more information about this great man and his
achievements? Has there been any memorial web sites put up? I'de be happy
to donate space on my server. Just e-mail me at [email protected] Are there
any news stories worth reading on this subject?

At 11:10 PM 10/17/98 -0700, you wrote:
>Subject: IP: Remembrance/postel
>From: Dave Farber [[email protected]]
>I, and others I fear, have spent a sleepless night after hearing of the
>death of Jon Postel last night. This morning there was a  note in my
>mail box from Vint Cerf that said many of the things I feel at this
>time. I asked him for permission to send on which he granted.
>I also remember Jon. I was his primary thesis advisor along with Jerry
>Estrin and I remember with fond memories the months spent closely
>working with Jon while his eager mind developed the ideas in back of
>what was a pioneering thesis that founded the area of protocol
>verification.  Since I was at UC Irvine and Jon at UCLA we used to meet
>in the morning prior to my ride to UCI at a Pancake House in Santa
>Monica for breakfast and the hard work of developing a thesis. I gained
>a great respect for Jon then and 10 pounds of weight.
>I will miss him greatly. Jon was my second Ph.D. student. The first,
>Philip Merlin, also died way before his time.
> October 17, 1998
>Vint Cerf
>A long time ago, in a network, far far away, a great adventure took
>Out of the chaos of new ideas for communication, the experiments, the
>tentative designs, and crucible of testing, there emerged a cornucopia
>of networks. Beginning with the ARPANET, an endless stream of networks
>evolved, and ultimately were interlinked to become the Internet. Someone
>had to keep track of all the protocols, the identifiers, networks and
>addresses and ultimately the names of all the things in the networked
>universe. And someone had to keep track of all the information that
>erupted with volcanic force from the intensity of the debates and
>discussions and endless invention that has continued unabated for 30
>years. That someone was Jonathan B. Postel, our Internet Assigned
>Numbers Authority, friend, engineer, confidant, leader, icon, and now,
>first of the giants to depart from our midst.
>Jon, our beloved IANA, is gone. Even as I write these words I cannot
>quite grasp this stark fact. We had almost lost him once before in 1991.
>Surely we knew he was at risk as are we all. But he had been our rock,
>the foundation on which our every web search and email was built, always
>there to mediate the random dispute, to remind us when our documentation
>did not do justice to its subject, to make difficult decisions with
>apparent ease, and to consult when careful consideration was needed. We
>will survive our loss and we will remember. He has left a monumental
>legacy for all Internauts to contemplate. Steadfast service for decades,
>moving when others seemed paralyzed, always finding the right course in
>a complex minefield of technical and sometimes political obstacles.
>Jon and I went to the same high school, Van Nuys High, in the San
>Fernando Valley north of Los Angeles. But we were in different classes
>and I really didn’t know him then. Our real meeting came at UCLA when we
>became a part of a group of graduate students working for Prof. Leonard
>Kleinrock on the ARPANET project. Steve Crocker was another of the Van
>Nuys crowd who was part of the team and led the development of the first
>host-host protocols for the ARPANET. When Steve invented the idea of the
>Request for Comments series, Jon became the instant editor. When we
>needed to keep track of all the hosts and protocol identifiers, Jon
>volunteered to be the Numbers Czar and later the IANA once the Internet
>was in place. 
>Jon was a founding member of the Internet Architecture Board and served
>continuously from its founding to the present. He was the FIRST
>individual member of the Internet Society I know, because he and Steve
>Wolff raced to see who could fill out the application forms and make
>payment first and Jon won. He served as a trustee of the Internet
>Society. He was the custodian of the .US domain, a founder of the Los
>Nettos Internet service, and, by the way, managed the networking
>research division of USC Information Sciences Institute.
>Jon loved the outdoors. I know he used to enjoy backpacking in the high
>Sierras around Yosemite. Bearded and sandaled, Jon was our resident
>hippie-patriarch at UCLA. He was a private person but fully capable of
>engaging photon torpedoes and going to battle stations in a good
>engineering argument. And he could be stubborn beyond all expectation.
>He could have outwaited the Sphinx in a staring contest, I think.
>Jon inspired loyalty and steadfast devotion among his friends and his
>colleagues. For me, he personified the words “selfless service.” For
>nearly 30 years, Jon has served us all, taken little in return, indeed
>sometimes receiving abuse when he should have received our deepest
>appreciation. It was particularly gratifying at the last Internet
>Society meeting in Geneva to see Jon receive the Silver Medal of the
>International Telecommunications Union. It is an award generally
>reserved for Heads of State but I can think of no one more deserving of
>global recognition for his contributions. 
>While it seems almost impossible to avoid feeling an enormous sense of
>loss, as if a yawning gap in our networked universe had opened up and
>swallowed our friend, I must tell you that I am comforted as I
>contemplate what Jon has wrought. He leaves a legacy of edited documents
>that tell our collective Internet story, including not only the
>technical but also the poetic and whimsical as well. He completed the
>incorporation of a successor to his service as IANA and leaves a lasting
>legacy of service to the community in that role. His memory is rich and
>vibrant and will not fade from our collective consciousness. “What would
>Jon have done?” we will think, as we wrestle in the days ahead with the
>problems Jon kept so well tamed for so many years. 
>There will almost surely be many memorials to Jon’s monumental service
>to the Internet Community. As current chairman of the Internet Society,
>I pledge to establish an award in Jon’s name to recognize long-standing
>service to the community, the Jonathan B. Postel Service Award, which is
>awarded to Jon posthumously as its first recipient.
>If Jon were here, I am sure he would urge us not to mourn his passing
>but to celebrate his life and his contributions. He would remind us that
>there is still much work to be done and that we now have the
>responsibility and the opportunity to do our part. I doubt that anyone
>could possibly duplicate his record, but it stands as a measure of one
>man’s astonishing contribution to a community he knew and loved.
<[email protected]>

Does God know Peano Algebra? Or does she not care if strong atheists
couldnt reason their way out of a trap made of Boolean presumptions?

A little bit of knowledge is a dangerous thing, but zero knowlege is
absolutely subversive.

Overspecialization breeds in weakness. It's a slow death.

Beat your algorithms into swords, your dumb terminals into shields, and
turn virtual machines into battlefields... Let the weak say, "I am strong"
and question authority.