If you follow the news at all, you have heard by now that we are out of IPv4 addresses. This isn't technically true just yet; not for a few more hours at least.
Up until now, the five regional Internet registries (RIRs) of the world have periodically requested additional IPv4 space from the global pool managed by IANA based on demand from downstream organizations. On January 31, IANA allocated two of the seven remaining /8 address blocks to APNIC, the RIR for the Asia-Pacific region, per the established process. This triggered an ICANN policy which mandates that the five remaining /8 blocks must now be allocated regardless of demand, one to each of the five RIRs, to help mitigate a rush on the remaining address space.
This second phase of the exhaustion policy hasn't yet been executed, but will be very soon. Probably tomorrow, as a "significant announcement" will be made jointly by the NRO, ICANN, ISOC, and IAB.
On Thursday, 3 February 2011, at 9:30 AM Eastern Standard Time (EST) [14:30 UTC /GMT], the Number Resource Organization (NRO), along with the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, the Internet Society (ISOC) and the Internet Architecture Board (IAB) will be holding a ceremony and press conference to make a significant announcement and to discuss the global transition to the next generation of Internet addresses.
Much has been written in the international media over the last few weeks about the dwindling pool of Internet addresses using the original Internet protocol, called IPv4 (Internet Protocol version 4), and this topic will be addressed at the event.
The announcement will be streamed live at http://www.nro.net/news/icann-nro-live-stream starting 1430 UTC/0930 EST. I strongly suggest watching the announcement, as it is a rare opportunity to consciously participate in Internet history.