Celestini Prize

Bell Labs and the Marconi Society sponsored the ‘Symposium on Transformative Digital Technologies’ on February 3 in Kampala, Uganda, as a culmination of the 2015 Celestini program. ‘Future Networks’ was the theme of the event, which was the largest ICT event of the area for the past 5 years. The highlight was the Celestini Prize, which “honors the demonstration of innovation and blue-sky thinking in developing a telecom-based solution to a socioeconomic challenge” selected by a panel that included Bob Tkach, Guilhem de Valicourt and Joseph Kakande from Bell Labs, as well as other local judges.

The Marconi Society has long recognized the many seminal contributions of Bell Labs in Communications Technologies: nine current or former Bell Labs researchers have received the prestigious Marconi Prize, and another three the Marconi Lifetime Achievement award, one of whom was Claude Shannon. The symposium in Kampala was a result of both organizations’ interests in deploying the power of information and communications networks to solving global ‘human need’ problems. The Celestini program has been lauded by many communications luminaries including Vint Cerf, Google Chief Internet Evangelist and co-inventor of TCP/IP, reiterating the credit it reflects on both Bell Labs & the Marconi Society.


India Abroad article

P Rajendran finds out how Himanshu Asnani, a winner of the Marconi Society’s Paul Baran Young Scholars Award, careened from wanting to become a neurosurgeon or cricketer into engineering

Right now, Himanshu Asnani may have been working his careful way through a human brain, or on the cricket field, bowling some blinders at some hapless bats- man’s brains or, as opening bat, whacking a ball past some cringing fielder at forward square leg.
Despite his interests, Asnani would not become a neurosurgeon or a cricketer. Because math happens. And the result of that heady infatuation sent Asnani careening away into engineering.
The self-deprecating Dr Asnani says he does not deserve the honor he is being given — the Marconi Society’s Paul Baran Young Scholars Award, which carries with it a modest sum of $4,000.
Dr Asnani has worked, among other things, on helping computers interact — and so cooperate — with each other. This step, along with the judicious use of communication and compression, could help ensure better infor- mation flow while reducing logjams in networks. Besides the work on communications, compression and cooperation in networks, Asnani has also worked on ways to compress human genome information.
Dr Asnani was born in Kota, Rajasthan, the son of Kanchan and the late Suresh Asnani, both doctors by train- ing. He came fourth in the Indian Institute of Technology Joint Entrance Examination.
He was involved in the technical contests at IIT but, since he had decided he would study further, did not go job-hunt- ing in India.
Dr Asnani is more involved in research than pure engineering, and finished his PhD in four years and now works as a systems engineer at Ericsson. Tsachy Weissman, Dr Asnani’s advisor at Stanford, in a statement, described him saying that his ‘work runs the gamut from the theoretical to the applied. He is attracted to important problems, and is as passionate about under- standing their deep theoretical underpinnings as he is about developing, implementing and experimenting with practical schemes that make a difference.’
While Dr Asnani enjoys his work, his other interest is to engage youth: He teaches yoga to teenagers in corporate circles and at Stanford. According to Robert Tkach, a Marconi Fellow and chair-
man of the Marconi Society’s Young Scholar Selection Committee, “The Young Scholar awards were created to look at what are the kind of people who might win the Marconi Prize in the future. We think these are the kind of people who might do that.” According to him the organization used its members’ contacts in academia to find those who have made significant contributions by the time they are 27, the age Marconi was when he did his transatlantic radio trans- mission.

More informations at: http://www.indiaabroad-digital.com/indiaabroad/20141017#pg1

Webinar Internet 2025

August 25th
Internet 2025 , Can we keep it open and evolving?

Mountain View, CA, August 19, 2014—Vint Cerf, Google’s Chief Internet Evangelist, will lead “Internet 2025: Can we keep it open and evolving?” the fifth in the Marconi Expertise webinar series.

The free event takes place at 10 a.m. Pacific Time, 1 p.m. New York, 6 p.m. London, August 25th.

Cerf says that among the topics he is likely to address in the 45 minute webinar, “Internet Governance is topic A. Other topics include privacy, safety, fraud, cyber-attacks, economics and business model disruption and social conventions in online environments.”

Cerf remains deeply involved in the Internet forty years after he and Bob Kahn invented what has become TCP/IP. (Both were honoured with the Marconi Prize for their invention.) He’s active in Internet governance debates, economic development through information technology, the complicated problem of preservation of knowledge across millennia and interplanetary Internet protocols. His New York Timescall to action, “Keep the Internet Open,” played a notable role in the ITU/WCIT debate.

He has a lighter side and a wicked sense of humor that makes him a favorite with interviewers ranging from Stephen Colbert to Charlie Rose. He’s even the hero and voice for a new cartoon, “Who runs the Internet’s address book?”

“Inside every 71-year-old is a 17-year-old wondering what happened,” he remarks.

“Internet 2025” will be moderated by Dave Burstein, Editor of Fast Net News. Advance questions for Vint Cerf may be sent to info@marconisociety.org. Please put “Webinar question” in the subject line.

The webinar series “Marconi Expertise” is an initiative of the Marconi Society, bringing the knowledge of engineering leaders to today’s issues. Marconi Fellows include many of the most honored engineers in the “Internet 2025” webinar serves as a prologue for the Marconi Society Symposium October 2nd at the National Academy of Sciences in Washington, D.C. There, he’ll be joined on a panel by long-time colleague Bob Kahn, Marconi Young Scholar Joseph Kakande, Dan Kaufman of DARPA and Vint’s former professor Len Kleinrock of UCLA, also a Marconi Fellow. Two other sessions address spectrum allocation and MIMO technology.