Wellington uni shines SDN spotlight on tech industry

"With SDN, developers are not restricted by the limitations of current hardware.”

Victoria University of Wellington aims to get the capital's tech community up to speed with the latest in network technology, by running a Software Defined Networking (SDN) workshop in the city.

The two-day workshop, to be held on 18 and 19 February, will give participants an understanding of Software Defined Networking (SDN), an emerging paradigm which allows software to be accessed and changed remotely.

The workshops content has been adapted from a trimester long course at Victoria’s School of Engineering and Computer Science.

While it is early days for SDN technology, industry leaders such as Google are already making use of it, citing flexibility and that it creates an environment for innovation as reasons for adopting the technology.

“It used to be that to make a change to how a device worked you had to physically replace the hardware," says Dr Bryan Ng, Engineering lecturer, Victoria University.

"With SDN, developers are not restricted by the limitations of current hardware.”

Dr Ng says connecting academics and Wellington’s growing technology industry is an important driver for holding the workshop.

Presenters and contributors to the workshop include industry representatives from Google, REANNZ (Research and Education Advanced Network New Zealand Ltd), Pica8 and Catalyst.

“With this workshop we are trying to narrow the gap between industry’s needs and what researchers are doing to meet those needs,” Dr Ng adds.

Along with experts in the field, two Victoria students will have the chance to present their work.

Huu Trung Truong and Matthew Hayes, who carried out research into specific areas of SDN, will present their findings at the workshop.

Dr Ng says another reason for holding the SDN workshop is to provide people with the skills to enable them to participate in ‘SDN Con’ which takes place in Wellington later in the year.

DN Con will offer developers the opportunity to work in teams to build SDN solutions.

The inaugural SDN Con ran successfully in 2014 and it is hoped that with further knowledge of SDN this year’s event will be even bigger.

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