iCAIR Press Releases

Northwestern University and IBM Demonstrate Future Digital Video Technologies

SAN JOSE, CA, June 24 Today at INET'99, the International Center for Advanced Internet Research (iCAIR) at Northwestern University in partnership with IBM demonstrated several new prototype technologies that could have a significant impact on the use of high quality digital video in the Next Generation of the Internet.

Currently, the Internet is primarily a medium for text and still images, with only basic capabilities for video. iCAIR and IBM are participating in a joint effort to develop new capabilities for digital video on high-performance Internet links. Today's demonstrations included a prototype "digital video portal," with multiple channels. The demonstration was based on a "video jukebox" concept for ease of use, and focuses on the access and retrieval of digital video over high speed Internet links. Whether a professor is searching for specific video content to include in a course, or a surgeon needs access to video broadcast of a surgical procedure, the ability to efficiently locate, access, preview, and retrieve the desired content is essential.

These advanced capabilities will lead to the development of multimedia portals that are important to a wide range of future Internet applications, including e-commerce, health care, education, government services, finance and entertainment. Proposed functions include enhanced, integrated capabilities for indexing, searching, storing, retrieving and management of digital video, accessible by off-the-shelf-PCs connected to high-performance Internet connections. Although not currently widely available at this time, high-performance Internet links will soon be deployed in offices and homes nation-wide. Many new types of advanced digital video services will be provided over these high performance connections.

"IBM and Northwestern University share a common goal to accelerate the development and testing of new technologies and applications for the Next Generation internet," said John Patrick, vice president, Internet Technology for IBM. "Today's application demonstrations are early "proof points" of our common goal and a great example of what the Next Generation internet will be capable of supporting."

"These technologies will allow the next-generation Internet to provide a wide range of advanced digital video capabilities, including interactive multimedia integrated with many different types of applications," said Joel Mambretti, director of iCAIR. In addition, demonstrations were given of prototype video capabilities for an International Virtual Institute. International links for this demonstration were made possible, in part, by the Science and Technology Research Transit Access Point (STAR TAP).

In April 1999, other advanced digital video capabilities were showcased by iCAIR and IBM at the University Corporation for Advanced Internet Development (UCAID) forum in Washington D.C. These presentations demonstrated new capabilities for streaming multi-channel video over international and national advanced networks, including the emerging Internet2 Digital Video Network (I2 DVN). I2 DVN is a joint project of iCAIR, IBM and a number of major universities.

About Northwestern University
The International Center for Advanced Internet Research (iCAIR) was established in 1998, at Northwestern University in partnership with IBM and other corporations. Founded in 1851, Northwestern is a leading private research and teaching institution with 17,700 undergraduate, graduate and professional students enrolled in 12 schools and colleges. Located on two lakefront campuses in Evanston and Chicago, it is considered one of the top ranked institutions for effective use of technology. For more information about Northwestern University, visit its Web site at http://www.nwu.edu. For a direct link to iCAIR, visit http://www.icair.org. Northwestern University is a founding member of the University Corporation for Advanced Internet Development (UCAID), a partnership of more than 141 major research universities, which has established the Internet2 and Abilene projects (http://www.ucaid.edu).

About IBM
IBM is the world's leading provider of information technology products and services and an Internet2 corporate partner. IBM was one of the founding members of NSFnet, which served as the Internet's primary backbone from 1987-1995. IBM creates, develops and manufactures the industry's most advanced information technologies, including computer systems, software, networking systems, storage devices and microelectronics. IBM is leveraging this experience in helping create technologies for the evolution of the Internet. For more information about IBM's Advanced Internet Projects, please visit http://www.ibm.com/internet2.

Science, Technology, And Research Transit Access Point is a persistent infrastructure, funded by the National Science Foundation Advanced Networking Infrastructure and Research division, which is part of the Computer and Information Sciences and Engineering (CISE) directorate, to facilitate the long-term interconnection and interoperability of advanced international networking in support of applications, performance measuring, and technology evaluations. The STAR TAP anchors the international vBNS connections program. For more information about STAR TAP, visit http://www.startap.net.


Media Contacts:
Susan Andrews
Northwestern University
(847) 467-5930

Mike Maney
(914) 766-1694

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