Jorge Somavilla of the University of Madrid has won the prize for best student poster at this year’s TERENA Networking Conference (TNC2012), awarded by Cisco Systems and the Internet Society, the co-sponsors of student participation. The winning poster, about "Virtual Networks over Linux (VNX)" describes a framework for creating a virtual network within a single computer and using that to simulate infrastructure operations. All posters displayed at TNC2012 can be viewed online at: https://tnc2012.terena.org/core/poster/list.
The other student posters that were selected for presentation at TNC2012 were also highly commended by the team of judges, which included representatives from the sponsor organisations, TERENA and the TNC2012 programme committee. Karen O'Donoghue, Research Analyst for Networks and Trust with Internet Society, said, "there was a wide range of topics in a number of interesting areas, showing well presented and carefully thought out work". Chris Lonvick, Director of Consulting Engineering with Cisco, explained that "most of them relate to research and provide new thoughts and results applying to real-world situations."
Communication and content
In the difficult task of selecting the winning poster, the judges considered the graphic and verbal presentation as well as the content and the research conveyed. “The quality of the winning poster was excellent because it was well laid out and led the reader through the information, so it was easy to understand the significant information at the end," said Chris Lonvick. "Good ideas that are not effectively communicated are not generally successful, so students need to learn to communicate about their work" agreed Karen O'Donoghue.
The judges were pleased to see that Jorge Somavilla was a significant contributor to the work described in the poster, but also that there had been extensive collaboration across three organisations to achieve it. Furthermore, the topic was "forward-looking" and useful to today's research networking community: "In general the field of virtual networking is in its infancy and has enormous potential," explains Karen O'Donoghue. The virtual network approach described in the poster "provides a cost-effective and flexible means to simulate and evaluate new options, services and features."
This was the fourth consecutive year that Cisco had provided sponsorship for student participation at TNC. "We welcome the Internet Society to the process this year," said Chris Lonvick, "and we look forward to next year’s submissions and seeing how students push the envelope even further".
The sponsorship of student poster presentations at the TERENA Networking Conference allows students from across Europe to attend the event free of charge, giving them access to experts in a range of research networking fields.
As well as Karen O’Donoghue and Chris Lonvick, the team of judges included Klaas Wierenga who is the Cisco representative in TERENA, Miroslav Milinović (Srce) who is TERENA Vice President for Conferences, and David Kelsey (STFC), who chaired the TNC2012 programme committee.