IPv6 Feels Like a Hollywood Disaster Flick
Another thing happened in 1998 besides Deep Impact and Armageddon: the publishing of RFC 2460 by the Internet Engineering Task Force.
Despite a solid foundation and compelling reasons to move to IPv6 the idea that we would exceed the IPv4 pool was scoffed at by the industry at large. As noted in this interesting Blog post on ZDNet, in true Hollywood disaster flick form, the early warnings from the computer scientists went largely unnoticed and ignored. They were told to go back to their dimly lit rooms and eat their Hot Pockets.
"The problem of running out was at least a decade or more away. There was more than enough time to figure it all out. Instead, they looked into band-aid type solutions such as Classless Inter-Domain Routing (CIDR) which is now quickly outliving its usefulness and practicality.
The current estimate is that IPv4 addresses in the public address blocks will run out completely sometime in the middle of 2011 or early 2012. And with that depletion will inevitably cause some degree of disruption, which will be far more greater than the disruption that was predicted with the Y2K remediation efforts of the 1990s."