What is Internet 2?
Using Internet 2, Professor Kristin Wobbe has high-speed access to national databases.
Internet2 is not a network. Internet2 is a consortium led by over 220 universities working in partnership with industry and government to develop and deploy advanced network applications and technologies, accelerating the creation of tomorrow's Internet. UCAID, the University Corporation for Advanced Internet Development runs Internet2.
Internet2 is developing and deploying advanced network applications and technologies for research and higher education, accelerating the creation of tomorrow's Internet. Internet2 recreates the partnership of academia, industry and government that helped foster today's Internet in its infancy.
The mission of Internet2 is to "facilitate and coordinate the development, operation and technology transfer of advanced, network-based applications and network services to further U.S. leadership in research and higher education and accelerate the availability of new services and applications on the Internet." While many of the applications running over Internet2 are focused on engineering issues, increasingly the technology is being used to support the arts and humanities.
The primary goals of Internet2 are to
- create a leading edge network capability for the national research community;
- enable revolutionary Internet applications;
- ensure the rapid transfer of new network services and applications to the broader Internet community.
The Internet2 network is an advanced national backbone network that supports the development and deployment of the new applications being developed within the Internet2 community. It connects regional network aggregation points, called gigaPoPs, to support the work of Internet2 members, which are all universities, as they develop advanced Internet applications. Internet2 peers with other high-performance research and education networks.
Middleware, or "glue," is a layer of software between the network and the applications. This software provides services such as identification, authentication, authorization, directories and security. In today's Internet, applications usually have to provide these services themselves, which leads to competing and incompatible standards. By promoting standardization and interoperability, middleware will make advanced network applications much easier to use. The Internet2 Middleware Initiative (I2-MI) is working toward the deployment of core middleware services at Internet2 universities.
What kind of applications will Internet2 support beyond those provided by the commodity internet?
- Tele-immersion enables users at geographically distributed sites to collaborate in real time in a shared, simulated, hybrid environment as if they were in the same physical room.
- New services and capabilities envisioned for Internet2 offer important opportunities to move the Digital Libraries program into new areas. Very high-bandwidth and bandwidth reservation will allow currently exotic materials such as continuous digital video and audio to move from research use to much broader use. Images, audio and video can, at least from a delivery point of view, move into the mainstream currently occupied almost exclusively by textual materials. This will also facilitate more extensive research in the difficult problems of organizing, indexing and providing intellectual access to these classes of materials.
- A Virtual Laboratory is a heterogeneous, distributed problem-solving environment that enables a group of researchers located around the world to work together on a common set of projects. As with any other laboratory, the tools and techniques are specific to the domain of the research, but the basic infrastructure requirements are shared across disciplines. Although related to some of the applications of tele-immersion, the virtual laboratory does not assume a priori the need for a shared immersive environment.
- Virtual Museums are increasing the need for high-bandwidth. With curators digitizing their collections, the wealth of assembled artifacts can be available to anyone with a high-speed connection.
More about Internet2 and WPI
- History of the Internet and Internet2
- Frequently Asked Questions About Internet2
- WPI's Advanced Networks
- Interesting Facts About WPI and Internet2
- Internet2 Web site
- Internet2 Glossary
Last modified: Oct 10, 2012, 16:14 EDT