I will remember 2003 as the year when high-speed Internet access became widely available in public locations such as airports, hotels, and coffee shops. As a frequent traveler, I really appreciate not having to find a suitable telephone jack and corresponding country-specific telephone adapter plug in order to get my e-mail. The IEEE 802.11 "WiFi" standard has truly arrived. I even stayed in a new hotel in Norway that provided WiFi access in every room by placing base stations in the hallways. When I first stepped into my hotel room and noticed that it had only a
telephone and no sign of any Ethernet jacks I worried, but a quick check revealed that I could purchase a scratch-off card at reception that provided me with a username and password valid for 24 hours. A clear example of a "technology generation leap."
The year 2003 was also the year in which unsolicited e-mail, or "spam," became a major problem for all Internet users. Various filtering systems have thankfully been devised and deployed, but this problem has no easy solution. It will be interesting to see what impact new antispam legislation will have over the coming months and years.
The first article presents an in-depth look at the IP Version 4 address space and its measured and projected consumption rate. When work first started on the design of IP Version 6, projections indicated that we'd run out of IPv4 addresses within a few years. Geoff Huston takes a fresh look at this in an article entitled "IPv4?How long do we have?"
The job of System Administrator, or "sysadmin," is a challenging one, and if your job includes keeping the network running 24 hours a day, you will probably appreciate some of the tips in our second article, entitled "Low-Tech Network Maintenance."
For the second time recently, Queen Elizabeth II has honored an Internet pioneer. Tim Berners-Lee, the inventor of the World Wide Web and director of the
World Wide Web Consortium
(W3C), was made a
, Order of the British Empire in the 2004 New Years Honours list. (See "
Which brings us to the IPJ publication schedule. If you are a regular subscriber to the IPJ, you probably have noticed a somewhat irregular publishing schedule in 2003. This December 2003 issue is indeed being published in January 2004. This results from our effort to produce timely quality articles in a world where the experts are not staff writers. Of course, you should still expect to receive four issues per year, and your feedback to
will help make IPJ even better.
—Ole J. Jacobsen, Editor and Publisher