Three questions for Vinton Cerf

We ask industry luminaries to predict the big IT stories and surprises of 2007

Vinton G. Cerf is vice president and chief Internet evangelist at Google. He is a co-designer of the TCP/IP protocols and the architecture of the Internet. In December 1997, President Clinton presented the National Medal of Technology to Cerf and colleague Robert E. Kahn for their pioneering work on the Internet. Cerf spoke recently with Computerworld's Gary Anthes.

Which IT story took you by surprise in 2006, and why?

Several, really -- the dramatic increase in interest in YouTube, the remarkable attraction of the Internet users to social networks like MySpace and multiplayer games like World of Warcraft.

What will be the biggest IT story of the new year?

The massive influx of Internet-enabled mobile [devices] will dramatically increase the number of Internet users and also challenge Internet application service providers to adapt to the characteristics of these small devices.

What one piece of advice would you offer the IT manager going into 2007?

Get smart about security, integrity and authenticity tools. Work hard to protect exposed systems to attack from outside the corporate firewall and from within by e-mail-borne viruses, worms and Trojan horses.

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