The National Science Foundation plans to provide 13 research grants to U.S. universities for building a better Internet.
Each school will receive $350,000 and have access to NSF's high-speed computer network called the Backbone Network Service. The backbone will provide high-bandwidth networking for research applications and can transfer data at 155 million bits per second, more than 5,000 times the speed of a standard 28.8-kbps modem.
The foundation plans to upgrade the backbone to deliver 622 million bits per second by the end of August and 2.2 trillion bits per second by the year 2001.
Other recent foundation-funded research projects include improvements in basic networking technology and multimedia applications.
The first Web browser, NCSA Mosaic, was developed by Marc Andreessen, then a student at the University of Illinois funded by a NSF research grant. Andreessen went on to co-found Netscape Communications.