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LOS ANGELES (AP) _ Keith Uncapher, a computer pioneer at the University of Southern California who was a key player in the development of the Internet, died Thursday of a heart attack, the university announced. He was 80.

Uncapher founded the Information Sciences Institute at USC's school of engineering in 1972.

Under his tenure as executive director, ISI researchers worked on the development of the Internet's system of domain names that includes ``.com'' ``.net,'' ``.org'' and other addresses.

Before forming ISI with a staff of three, Uncapher worked for RAND Corporation in Santa Monica. He was director of RAND's computer science division, where he led a project on ``packet switching'' technology, which breaks down digital messages into parts and sends them over a network to be reassembled at their destination.

Born in Denver on April 1, 1922, Uncapher graduated with an electrical engineering degree from California Polytechnic University, San Luis Obispo, and served for four years in the U.S. Navy during World War II.

He was elected to the National Academy of Engineering in 1998.