Return of Larry Roberts

Larry RobertsIt is always interesting to keep tabs on the cool guys in the networking space. One of them is Dr. Larry Roberts, one of the many fathers of the Internet. In recent years he founded an intelligent router maker, Caspian Networks, and raised nearly $262 million for the company. Every VC worth his weight in management fee invested in the company. Caspian is having a rough time, much like every other start-up, but there are encouraging signs for the company. The company has re-tweaked its super-routers and turned them into smaller devices that use the same flow-state router technology to ensure quality of service for premium content such as video and voice over packet networks. Dr. Roberts remains on the board of Caspian, but that’s all. He is busy putting together his next start-up, Anagran. Anagran means endless light in the ancient Persian Zoroastrian religion as per the company website. Otherwise the details on the company are scant. Some Silicon Valley insiders say that Roberts is building new edge router technology, that uses the same flow-state routing principal as Caspian. These products are going to be targeted at the enterprises and will bring ATM-type quality to the packet networks. Given the increased importance of voice on the packet networks, it is going to be potentially big market, experts say. If you want to learn more about Caspian and flow-state router technology, read this excellent piece by Josh McHugh in Wired Magazine.