by Darius Kazemi, Feb 14 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.

See you in Atlantic City

RFC-45 is by Jon Postel and Steve Crocker of UCLA, dated April 14th, 1970. It's ominously titled “New Protocol is Coming”.

The technical content

Postel and Crocker are giving the RFC participants two weeks' notice that they will be sending out what they hope is a final version of the new HOST-to-HOST protocol based on the feedback they've received in the last couple months.

They suggest that since pretty much everyone is going to be at the Spring Joint Computer Conference in Atlantic City, New Jersey, that they meet there in the afternoon of May 7th to discuss the protocol. That morning everyone is expected to attend Larry Roberts' network session to see the latest and greatest computer networking papers, including a paper on the protocol itself.

The afternoon meeting is “for everyone to exchange gripes, suggestions and schedules.”


At this point, we have read through a whole calendar year's worth of RFCs! The first RFC is dated April 7th, 1969, and this is one year and one week later. So we've averaged a little less than one RFC per week in this first year. And remember, this whole time it's been distributed via the postal service.

Further reading

The Joint Computer Conference was a big deal for about 30 years. It used to alternate between the east and west coasts of the United States. For a while they were known as the Eastern and Western Joint Computer Conferences, then as the Spring and Fall Joint Computer Conferences, and then finally merged into the National Computer Conference.

For your perusal: all 739 pages of the full conference proceedings of the 1970 Spring Joint Computer Conference. The ARPANET related papers are on pages 543 to 597 (those are the paper page numbers, jump to page 553 in the PDF).

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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.