In 1979, I was in the second row of a Kinks concert at the Providence Civic Center singing the words to “LOLA” at the top of my lungs. I can proudly say that the event was recorded and I am now immortalized on the Kinks “One for the Road” live album…..along with about 10,000 others. This past week I was reading about another LOLA (LOw LAtency) technology which is helping musicians collaborate over Internet2. (http://edinburgh.stv.tv/articles/315083-lola-technology-to-bring-worlds-top-orchestras-together-in-scotland/?utm_content=bufferb93ce&utm_medium=social&utm_source=twitter.com&utm_campaign=buffer)
I quickly tweeted “This is why I love our field” when I read the article. The idea that technology has brought geographically dispersed musicians together to collaborate and perform, points at some of the power we are unlocking by building the networks we do. Maybe my love of music caused me to highlight the application but often we tend to focus on the negatives of technology rather than the wonders. Some might say that many network and application level technologies promote more isolation not less. I would argue that it is breaking down isolationist barriers everyday by easing collaboration. The LOLA technology in the article vastly reduces delays across a network and combined with the ultra-fast networks of the R&E community and Internet 2, musicians can practice and actually have performances in real time while sitting in different countries. Applications traversing R&E networks today allow researchers across the globe from diverse institutions and diverse disciplines to participate in a project completely independent of where that project is housed.
In the NY/New England, the R&E community is building an extraordinary platform for cooperation and collaboration. This regional platform network is capable of delivering 1G, 10G and 100G services over an advanced IP infrastructure which has been developed in cooperation with regional partners Northeast Regional Education Network (NEREN), the Connecticut Education Network (CEN) and the Northern Crossroads (NoX) GigaPop in Cambridge. Assets and connectivity region wide now become accessible to our membership. OSHEAN, for instance, has built a partnership with NaviSite for on-net cloud services that a University in Connecticut, for example, can take advantage of. Hospitals in RI can build networks to the hospitals in Boston and on and on. The realization of this vision, while conceived a number of years ago, is just now coming to tangible fruition. Significant technical work coupled with a vibrant spirit of cooperation has brought us into a new age of capability and possibilities.
“She walked up to me and she asked me to dance”…..