Larry Has Left the Building

Internet pioneer Dr. Lawrence Roberts is moving on.

The founder and chief technology officer of Caspian Networks Inc. has left the company's day-to-day operations, company officials say.

Caspian isn't shutting down, nor is Roberts divorcing himself from the company. "Larry is still involved," says Dallas Kachan, Caspian director of marketing. "He's an active member of the board of directors."

As for what he's doing, Roberts is keeping quiet. An email query from Light Reading received a polite reply in which Roberts neither confirmed nor denied his leaving Caspian, writing, "I cannot tell you anything at this time."

Kachan confirms Roberts is planning to start a "new initiative," and one source believes Roberts is taking his case to the enterprise. With Caspian's Flow-Based Networking no longer aimed at core networks, it seems reasonable for Roberts to aim at the higher-volume enterprise market. The need for IP quality of service (QOS) could become acute there, if demand for time-sensitive traffic such as videoconferencing starts to blossom.

Roberts's next venture is sure to be closely watched. Part of the team that developed Arpanet, the precursor to the Internet, he's recognized as one of the world's top authorities on networks and packet switching. He's hobnobbed with the likes of Vint Cerf, Tim Berners-Lee, and Woody Allen (see Larry Roberts).

Light Reading will follow the story as it develops. Or we'll just follow Larry around until he cracks.

— Craig Matsumoto, Senior Editor, Light Reading

opinion 12/5/2012 | 1:40:53 AM
re: Larry Has Left the Building Anyone really want to give this much thought ? Ok, so a couple decades ago he did something cool but what has he done since ? Spent lots of other peoples money without producing anything! I think his glory days are over and hopefully he doesn't sucker another couple hundred million from the VC world and screw things up for the likes of people with real capabilites and ideas. Somebody please point out a success of Larry in the last 10 years (not just raising money) ? I dont get it. Has he done somthing else not widely known ?
green 12/5/2012 | 1:40:48 AM
re: Larry Has Left the Building well Mr.Roberts doesn't have to do anything. he has the name. that attracts a lot of other good talent. that builds a good team. that's what all superstars are supposed to do. attract other good talent and form a good group.

I won't be surprised if his next idea is funded again. that's the way things are.

V.C may not know the difference between core network and condoms but they have come up with a formula for success. that is bet on names (well known people or well known universities like stanford) and the rest of us have to just work for them.

I know it sucks but that is the way the world works..
PO 12/5/2012 | 1:40:46 AM
re: Larry Has Left the Building Ok, so a couple decades ago he did something cool but what has he done since ?

Always interesting to see how little knowledge folks can display. (I blame the media :) I'm not his biographer; I'm not going to catalog his many contributions to modern networking, which have been many. I won't even highlight his wisdom to acknowledge where errors were made on projects he was involved with (such as fixed cell sizes in ATM).

Thomas Edison certainly hasn't done much lately. But the suggestion that Mr. Roberts hasn't done much lately really misses the mark.
indianajones 12/5/2012 | 1:40:43 AM
re: Larry Has Left the Building well, it is a fair question. All his recent projects are massive failures including Caspian.

I have interacted with Larry and found him to be an extremely intelligent person. But he is pretty dogmatic in his views and there is ample evidence that he has no business savvy to translate his ideas into successful products. He should stick to academics and research projects.
Stevery 12/5/2012 | 1:40:41 AM
re: Larry Has Left the Building well, it is a fair question.

I find that there is great confusion between "Value Add" and "Value Creation".

Very few people seem to be capable of starting with zero, and creating value. My hat is off
to anyone that can successfully accomplish that feat.

opinion 12/5/2012 | 1:40:20 AM
re: Larry Has Left the Building Ok, but what's you point ? I'm not being argumentative and have reseached him more, but what value add or value creation has Larry created ?

He added value to Caspian, a terrbible failure, perhaps the largest VC flop in history despite doing a complete washout round to all investors and employess. Oops I raised over 100M+ and lost it all but give me another change, ooops I lost another 100M+ and lost it all but give me another chance. Are we sure he wasn't booted out of Caspian ? Is there any product success is his history ? Maybe he should stick to accademics as pointed out by someone else.

Whats your point ? I'm sure all the VC's in Caspian as well as employees are dying to hear it. Not to mention the next VC's in queue.

I certainly wouldn't invest in his next gig or become an employee expecting to reap rewards from his next ideas.
takefour 12/5/2012 | 1:39:07 AM
re: Larry Has Left the Building I'm not sure Larry has ever done anything--certainly no product success --ever. He has spent a lot of money though, and does often compete with Al Gore in taking credit for inventing the Internet.
hzr 12/5/2012 | 1:39:07 AM
re: Larry Has Left the Building Larry's new startup is called Anagran. He will be speaking at the North American IPv6 Summit this month on QoS for IPv6. See http://www.usipv6.com/speakers...
opticmystic 12/5/2012 | 1:36:46 AM
re: Larry Has Left the Building It's amazing to find such pedestrian comments here in what I thought would be a group of professional readers. Gee, I wonder why Larry was able to raise all that capital? I wonder if it was because the product he created has the potential to revolutionize the internet as we know it? Has anyone who commented really analyzed the product or the concept of flow routing? I find it to be brilliant, and just enough ahead of it's time to be unappreciated by American internet providers who haven't managed to expand services wisely nor secure QOS adequately. He is full of ideas and I think VC's have seen this and been inspired by it. I don't think you've seen the last of these ideas, they are the beginning of the future of the internet.
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