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Leonard Kleinrock, Ph.D. (born June 13, 1934 in New York) is a computer scientist, and a professor of computer science at UCLA, who made several important contributions to the field of computer networking, in particular to the theoretical side of computer networking. He also played an important role in the development of the ARPANET at UCLA.

His most well-known and significant work is his early work on queueing theory, which has applications in many fields, among them as a key mathematical background to packet switching, the basic technology behind the Internet. His initial contribution to this field was his doctoral thesis in 1962, published in book form in 1964; he later published several of the standard works on the subject.

He has described this work as:

"Basically, what I did for my PhD research in 19611962 was to establish a mathematical theory of packet networks ..."
His theoretical work on hierarchical routing, done in the late 1970s with his then-student Farouk Kamoun, is now critical to the operation of today's world-wide Internet.

ARPANET and the Internet

In 1969, ARPANET, the world's first packet switched computer network, was established on October 29 between nodes at Kleinrock's lab at UCLA and Douglas Engelbart's lab at SRI. Interface Message Processors (IMP) at both sites served as the backbone of the first Internet [1].

In addition to SRI and UCLA, UCSB, and the University of Utah were part of the original four network nodes. By December 5, 1969, the initial 4-node network was connected.

In 1988, Kleinrock chaired a group which presented the report Toward a National Research Network to congress [2]. This report was highly influential upon then-Senator Al Gore who used it to develop the Gore Bill or the High Performance Computing Act of 1991 [3], which was influential in the development of the Internet as it is known today. [4]. In particular, it led indirectly to the development of the 1993 web browser MOSAIC, which was created at National Center for Supercomputing Applications(NSCA) which was funded by the High-Performance Computing and Communications Initiative, a program created by the High Performance Computing Act of 1991.

Education and career

He graduated from the legendary Bronx High School of Science in 1951, and received a B.E.E. in 1957 from the City College of New York, and an S.M. and a Ph.D. in EECS from MIT in 1959 and 1963 respectively. He then joined the faculty at UCLA, where he remains to the present day; during 1991-1995 he served as the Chairman of the Computer Science Department there.

Kleinrock is also a member of the advisory board of TTI/Vanguard.

He has received numerous professional awards.

ARPANET
UCLA
Computer Science
Nerds 2.0.1 - 1998 documentary in which Kleinrock gives a lengthy interview

Further reading

Leonard Kleinrock, "Information Flow in Large Communication Nets", Ph.D. Thesis Proposal, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, July 1961
Leonard Kleinrock, "Information Flow in Large Communication Nets", RLE Quarterly Progress Report, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, July 1961
Leonard Kleinrock, "Information Flow in Large Communication Nets", RLE Quarterly Progress Report, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, April 1962
Leonard Kleinrock, Communication Nets: Stochastic Message Flow and Design (McGraw-Hill, 1964)
Leonard Kleinrock, Queueing Systems: Volume I Theory (Wiley Interscience, New York, 1975)
Leonard Kleinrock, Queueing Systems: Volume II Computer Applications (Wiley Interscience, New York, 1976)
Leonard Kleinrock, Farok Kamoun, "Hierarchical Routing for Large Networks, Performance Evaluation and Optimization", Computer Networks, Vol. 1, No. 3, pp. 155174, January 1977

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