I first started working on SCinet during SC09 in Portland. I was teamed up with David Boertjes who worked on the Wide-area Network Transport Team–the team responsible for bringing worldwide connectivity to SC. Boertjes introduced me to a collaborative group of engineers with such camaraderie between network engineers and vendors to build the highest capacity, short-lived network each and every year to promote science collaboration.
As an engineer with an R&D background, this opportunity to build SCinet allowed me to understand the context of the network element in the technology I was designing and verifying for my employer. It was also an occasion to truly understand and compare the other machines and network devices. I always had the highest respect for the competition–we spend so much time testing and hardening our technology over time that it helps to focus on providing the technology needed for the market.
SCinet gave me an opportunity to meet new people who had different perspectives on the network element (i.e. router, switch, computer). This feedback allowed, and still allows me to be a representative voice of the community in the direct design of my corporation’s technology. At the same time, this experience showed me that there is a different life out there for engineers in R&D–outside of the private sector.
I met new people inside and outside my corporate environment and I decided to get involved in SCinet after SC09. As a result, I chose a different career path. I became a more technical, experienced network solution architect. I would be involved in different network challenges to allow different scientific experiments to benefit from the high-technology sector of the fiber optic telecommunication.
During the last six or seven years, I met many high-quality and bright people from all around the world involved in the SCinet project. I have built privileged relationships that go beyond the work activity; these people are also my friends. They are focused, dedicated, involved and proud to build the network at every aspect of it.
This year I am proud to be the architecture co-chair with my esteemed co-chair and engineer from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Matt Smith. My endeavor in SCinet is to increase the technical knowledge and positively impact the adoption of new, high-end technologies. The idea here is to promote learning, career development and networking abilities beyond our home institution, corporations, whatever…, whether it is in the private or public sector.
Written by Marc Lyonnais, External Research, Ciena