JANET – the first 25 years

Speakers: Bob Day, Tim Marshall, Roland Rosner, and Shirley Wood
Date: 23rd April 2009
Time: 14.30 Room is open from 14.00 - meet up with society members
Location: Fellows Library of the Science Museum, Exhibition Road, London, SW7 2DD

About the seminar

What is JANET? Certainly it is a communications network. But to many, perhaps depending on the perspective of the individual, it is more: a concept, a community, a variety of services, and a part of UK education and research life.
JANET facilitates a range of activities that let individuals and organisations push back the traditional boundaries of teaching, learning and research methods. For example, JANET’s videoconferencing and video streaming capabilities are being used to deliver lectures to remote groups of students, while for researchers the capacity of the JANET backbone allows the linking of large data storage and high-performance computing facilities at a national and international level.
In 25 years JANET has moved from a network serving 60 universities and research councils running at 9.6kbit/s to a multi-gigabit, multi-service network connecting 18 million users covering research, higher education, further education and schools. It has become a critical part of the education and research community in the UK.

This seminar will cover the challenges through the years creating and growing a single UK computer network, the widening community, and major steps in JANET’s development.

The talks will take around 2 hours, followed by questions and discussion.

About the speakers

Tim Marshall joined JANET(UK) in 2005, after holding senior management positions in the BBC and at the Walt Disney Company. Tim’s other activities include in 2004 and 2008 being seconded to the Athens and Beijing Olympics broadcasting organisations to be responsible for ensuring that international coverage met the stringent Service Level Agreement. His charitable work includes producing the Festival of Remembrance at the Royal Albert Hall each year. Tim’s specialist interests are the transfer of development methodologies from the old media to the new as well as developing best commercial practice in the public sector.

Roland Rosner was head of the original Joint Network Team back in the late 1970s and early eighties and was responsible for the strategy that led to the creation of JANET in 1984. Since then he has been a stalwart supporter both of JANET and more generally of collaborative networking within the higher education sector.

Shirley Wood is JANET(UK)'s Head of Communications and Support. Shirley has been responsible for the creation of the support services offered by the company including the JANET service desk, training courses and information dissemination to the customers. She previously worked on systems support and on user support issues related to the network both JANET and its predecessor.

Bob Day is Chief Technology Officer of JANET(UK) and has been responsible for many of the architectural and policy developments within JANET. Particular interests have been the development of acceptable use, connection and charging policies, and of the roles of Regional Networks as both customer and service provider within the overall JANET model.


For more information about JANET click here. There is also a regular, informative JANET newsletter, which can be viewed on that site (under Services then Publications).


Click to see a podcast of the event