Surfin ‘in the usa: to the death of the computer scientist norman abramson

As is known now, the computer scientist norman abramson has died at the age of 88 years on the consequences of a cancer disease. Together with frank kuo, he developed the wireless alohanet as a leader of the ethernet and made sure that this radio network was open to the arpanet.

Hawaii: develop radio network, surf the daily

Aloha is said to hawaiian, if you meet or if you say goodbye. Aloha horte ‘standard’ abramson the first time when he was a young lecturer on the backpath from a computer conference in tokyo on hawaii a break and surfing in the waves. Abramson decided to give up his post at the university stanford and to pull with the family to hawaii to surf the day.

In 1968 he became a professor for information technology and electrical engineering at the university of hawaii. In stanford, he had received his doctorate and encoding information packets, in hawaii, he made himself develop these ideas in a radio network of the university, which should combine the over several islands scattered buildings of the university. First, a channel of the commercial wireless network of taxi drivers and mini-computers type hp 2115a. For the coding and decoding of the information packages, the program merehune, hawaiian ran on these computers "little ghost".

With "small spirits" connection to arpanet

At the beginning of 1970, the first transmissions arrive and already in 1971 the alohanet was able to go into regular operation. The functional principle of frank kuo for satellite transfer was modified and so the university of december 1972 was connected via intelsat iv to the arpanet. Believe the internet history of nerds 2.0.1, abramson had seen a chalkboard with a list of universities in the arpanet projectburo in the pentagon in 1970 in 1970, which should be connected to the arpanet and simply added the university of hawaii.

Abramson’s fundamental idea for the alohanet was to divide communication into packages and simply resend these packages in time, if they collided or otherwise lost during the translation of other packages. The procedure allows optional access to the communication network. Abramson’s description of packet-switched communication was read by the doctoral student bob metcalfe. He spent a few months in hawaii and studied the alohanet before he completed his dissertation with a description of this network. Metcalfe at the parc research center of xerox, where he conceived the ethernet as an enlargement of the alohanet and father commercialized with his company 3com.

50 years alohanet

Despite the influence of his skin cancer, norm abramson together with frank kuo still in january 2020 at the festival event for the 50. Alohanet’s birthday. In this video recording, he reports 26 over the minute of the alohanet. He provided the theoretical framework for the radio network. During his colleague frank kuo implemented the ideas, abramson went surfing.

Norman abramson 2020 over its share of alohanet (from minute 26)

Norman abramson erlag already on the 1. December 2020 the consequences of its cancer. He died in his home in san francisco.