Nearly two years ago NIST solicited candidates for AES, the Advanced Encryption Standard algorithm to serve as a successor to DES. A year ago, 15 candidates were submitted from 12 countries. On August 9, NIST announced the 5 finalists. These are
MARS developed by IBM RC6 developed by RSA Labs Rjindael developed by Joan Daemen and Vincent Rijmen Serpent developed by Ross Anderson, Eli Biham, and Lars Knudsen Twofish developed by Bruce Schneier, John Kelsey, Doug Whiting, David Wagner, Chris Hall, and Niels Ferguson
There is one more conference scheduled for evaluating the finalists next April. (See the write-up of the AES2 conference, which took place this past March.) Final determination of the standard is due in the summer of 2001. More on AES can be found at the official AES Web page.