ISC has always been supportive of Internet infrastructure development in Africa. In addition to being the first root-server operator to offer anycast instances in Africa, we have long provided Secondary Name Services (SNS) to a number of African ccTLDs as part of our public benefit mission. We have also sent our staff to AfNOG meetings to help in training on our FOSS (BIND and DHCP).
I was fortunate to attend the most recent Af*’s (AfNOG, AfriNIC, AfREN, AfPIF, AfGWG, etc) meeting in the Gambia which has been rebranded as the African Internet Summit. This rebranding reflects the maturity of the organizations involved in Internet coordination and the growing diversity of stakeholders who participate in Internet governance in the region. The conference was also graced by a fantastic speech by the Vice President of the Gambia Aja Dr. Isatou Njie-Saidy who seems to understand the importance of the Internet for African development. The African Governmental Working Group meetings continue to serve as a working model of Enhanced Cooperation in Internet Governance amongst many others who get much more international media attention.
Several ISC staff have roles in various RIRs and NOGs. I attended to finish my term as co-chair of the AfriNIC Policy Development Working Group. In addition to my volunteer role inside the RIR system, I was able to talk to a large number of folks about putting F-root servers in various locations (in addition to the existing nodes of Nairobi, Dar Es Salaam, Lagos, J’Burg and Cairo), offered SNS to ccTLDs and made plans to set up more BIND/DNSSEC/IPv6 training courses in Africa and other parts of the developing world with other like-minded Internet infrastructure organizations. African networks often use FOSS and BIND is widely deployed, so when I explained to people that I recently started working for ISC, the response was almost always “I use BIND”. I even saw some of our “layer-9” t-shirts at the conference, which always brings a smile to my face.
ISC looks forward to continuing to provide operational, policy and technical expertise to the Internet eco-system community as part of our public-benefit mission. We plan to continue to work with our supporters and customers in the developing world to help spread the edge of the network and the benefits that internetworking bring.