IPv6 to power 'city of the future'

The city of Harrisonburg, Virginia, will experience a wide variety of new Internet-based services with the rollout of citywide Internet Protocol Version 6. Harrisonburg will become the first U.S. city to have a citywide IPv6 network in the third quarter of the year, said Mark Bayliss, director of the Harrisonburg Project and CEO of Visual Link Incorporated, a Winchester, Virginia-based Internet service provider. Harrisonburg has branded itself the "city of the future" and hopes to be a reminder of IPv6's advantages over IPv4. Harrisonburg has partnered with James Madison University on the project, and the university will use the network for delivering virtual learning services, added Christopher Harz, organizer of the U.S. IPv6 Summit in Reston, Virginia. "Eventually, this will involve training, classrooms and education for a whole bunch of disciplines we haven't even thought of yet," Harz said.

Harz and Bayliss both have many ideas and implementations for IPv6. The way IPv6 connects computers will facilitate mobile commerce, enabling mobile-phone users to buy tickets and download a bar code that can be displayed on the phone instead of carrying a physical ticket. In addition, IPv6's more efficient network routing will allow for the cost of providing Internet-based video services to drop by huge amounts. Because it has nearly unlimited network address space, IPv6 will also allow documents to have their own network address, creating a new field of authentication and Web-based notary services. Harrisonburg will also provide IPv6 for its emergency response agencies, including voice, data and map services. The city plans to start demonstrating eight IPv6 products soon: a test area for military and civilian applications is slated for the third quarter of this year.

News source: ComputerWorld

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