Legg Mason's Levin, Precursor's Freeman Join Internet Co-Founder
WASHINGTON D.C. - Two leading analysts will engage in a discussion of Internet governance, the Internet standards process, evolution of the Internet, and the role of the "Digital Object Architecture" in managing information on the net with the Internet's co-founder at The Progress & Freedom Foundation's first "Innovation Agenda 2005" CEO lunch Wednesday, January 12th. Legg Mason Managing Director Blair Levin and Precursor equity analyst John Freeman have been added to the agenda, which features a presentation by Robert Kahn, founder and president of the Corporation for National Research Initiatives (CNRI). The event is January 12, from 12:00 to 2:00 pm at the Mandarin Oriental hotel at 1330 Maryland Avenue, SW.
Kahn, along with Vint Cerf, developed the TCP/IP protocol for the U.S. Defense Department's Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) in the early 1970s, and that open protocol has allowed the Internet to become what it is today. In 1986, Kahn founded CNRI to pursue research and development for the national information infrastructure. One initiative CNRI has launched, known as the digital object architecture, in an open architecture for information management that allows data structures (called Digital Objects) to be identified by unique, persistent identifiers called handles. Handles are resolved by a scaleable, distributed system called the "Handle System." This system is similar in some ways to the Domain Name System, but it differs in that it identifies data structures rather than just wires, machines, or files. Digital Objects may be mobile or stored in one or more "Repositories."
Levin joined Legg Mason in January 2001 and previously was chief of staff to Federal Communications Commission Chairman Reed Hundt, where he oversaw the FCC's Internet initiatives. He is a leading analyst on telecommunications issues, and participated in the implementation of the Telecom Act of 1996. Freeman has an extensive background as a technology and strategy consultant, and has worked with companies such as IBM, Intel, Motorola and Nortel Networks. He also served as director of business development for Paradyne following its acquisition by Texas Pacific Group and played a key role in what is considered the most successful leveraged buyout in the technology sector to date.
Levin and Freeman will discuss with Kahn the larger implications of his presentation after his conclusion. Digital Object Architecture has significant ramifications for Internet governance, the role and relevance of ICANN, and the applicability of policy mandates for network neutrality.
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The Progress & Freedom Foundation is a market-oriented think tank that studies the digital revolution and its implications for public policy. It is a 501(c)(3) research & educational organization.