by Darius Kazemi, Jan 21 2019

In 2019 I'm reading one RFC a day in chronological order starting from the very first one. More on this project here. There is a table of contents for all my RFC posts.

Meeting minutes

RFC-21 is meeting minutes from a Network Working Group meeting held on October 10, 1969. The RFC itself is dated October 17, 1969. Vint Cerf is once again listed as the author.

Technical content

The conversation is divided into three parts.

In part 1, they discuss revisions to BBN Report No. 1822. I am still unable to find a 1969 version of this report. I can only find a January 1976 revision that is significantly changed (the page numbers don't match up at all, for starters). The group discusses what to do if the IMP network is at maximum capacity, how to take advantage of some IMP quirks to aid in measuring ARPANET traffic, and reminding people that some of the numbers in the BBN document are in octcal (base 8) so when they see “type 10” that is really “type 8”.

In part 2 they tell us to disregard Déloche's RFC-11, and that new information will be coming in RFC-22. This is good. I didn't like RFC-11 very much.

In part 3 they tell us to keep an eye out for RFC-23, which will concern sending control messages over links.


The meeting was attended by people from SDC, UCSB, and UCLA. Listed in the attendance list under UCLA is Jon Postel. I believe this is the first reference to Postel in an RFC. I mentioned this in my RFC-8 post but it bears repeating: Postel was the editor of the RFC series from almost the very beginning of the series until his untimely death in 1998. (He was not editor at this point because it was not a “series” or anything yet.) Postel was also in charge of top level domain assignment and IP addresses before ICANN was established right around the time of his death. For many years Postel essentially was the internet. There's a lot of information about him at USC's Postel Center and RFC-2468 is a remembrance of Postel by Vint Cerf... the author of this very RFC.

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About me

I'm Darius Kazemi. I'm a Mozilla Fellow and I do a lot of work on the decentralized web with both ActivityPub and the Dat Project.