The Interaction of Science and Society, As Illustrated by The Internet

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ACM Distinguished Lecture, Feb 08, 2012, 11:00AM – 12:00PM, Tech Center 111

The Interaction of Science and Society, As Illustrated by The Internet

Peter Freeman, Georgia Institute of Technology

Abstract: Science and society are more tightly intertwined than either recognizes; both need to act on this observation. The need-based interaction between them is well understood, but there are interactions more fundamental and, at the same time, less well understood. The origins, growth, and potential future of the Internet form an illuminating story in its own right, but also serve to illustrate this observation. We will sketch the history of the Internet, illustrate some of the crucial interactions between society and the Internet as it has developed, and speculate on some possible futures. We will close with some thoughts on increasing understanding between science and society.

Bio: Peter A. Freeman is affiliated with The Advisory Group at Huron, specializing in strategic and operational guidance for organizations involved in research, education, and development. He was Assistant Director of the National Science Foundation, heading the Computer and Information Science and Engineering (CISE) Directorate, from 2002- 2007. In that position, he helped start the GENI Project and a number of other new initiatives in CISE. Previously, he was Founding Dean of the College of Computing at Georgia Tech from 1990 to 2002, where he is now an Emeritus Dean and Professor.