by Darius Kazemi, Mar 4 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.


RFC-63 is titled “Belated Network Meeting Report”, authored July 31st, 1970 by Vint Cerf of UCLA.

The technical content

This RFC is indeed belated! It's meeting minutes for a meeting that happened almost 3 months prior on May 8th, 1970 at Lincoln Laboratory. This is the meeting to discuss Lincoln's proposal for a Local Interaction Language that was proposed back in RFC-43.

The document itself is a short summary so I will summarize that summary by saying: they talked about some things and came to some agreements related to the message data type system in RFC-42. My complaint about that RFC was it was a bit unclear and unspecific. This meeting ironed out a few specifics and made it more implementable.


There is barely any mention of Local Interaction Language in this document other than to mention that it was discussed. According to RFC-43, learning about LIL was the purpose of this meeting. So now I'm going to put on my highly opinionated and possibly projecting personal experience hat. I have been to technical meetings where the pretext is we are going to discuss some technology that nobody really understands or particularly cares to learn about. You might be open to hearing about the tech but the real reason you go is that having a bunch of your colleagues in the same room is useful. And boy there were lots of east coast and west coast ARPANET implementors (or their representatives) in the room for this meeting. Twenty-seven by my count. The tone of this RFC suggests that people politely listened to the LIL presentation and then there was “considerable discussion” of message data types for the remainder of the meeting.

Further reading

The author notes that the full details of the Local Interaction Language are available in a Lincoln Lab technical report titled “Graphics”, which you can read here. As far as I can tell it was never implemented.

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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.