Marshall takes a look at the future of the internet
April 8, 2011 ·
Members of the state’s high tech community gathered at Marshall University yesterday to discuss the future of the Internet.
The conference started with keynote
speaker Selby Wellman, retired Vice President of Cisco Systems and Marshall
University Alum. He talked about the Internet's younger days, in the early
1980’s when it was only used privately by computer companies like IBM. In 1994
it started to become mainstream and since then has blown up. Wellman says even
to someone in the business it’s still surprising to see how much the internet
means to everyone.
“We always had a perception and
understanding of what the internet could do for our businesses and we also understood
the emphasis it could have on education, but I’m just absolutely blown away by
Facebook and all those kinds of things and social media and how fast and
rapidly that is happening,” Wellman said.
Wellman illustrated some of the research
Cisco and other internet companies are doing that will take the internet to the
next step. They’re working on everything from ways to improve education,
healthcare and the business world, to ways to prevent crime. Wellman says most
people don’t realize the potential the internet still holds.
“The average person on the street
absolutely not they won’t grasp that until it happens, but the technology
leaders today they understand it and they can see it, like John over at Cisco
he has a tremendous grasp. John believes and has for several years that the
internet will transform the world,” Wellman said.
Wellman is speaking of Cisco CEO John
Chambers. Wellman says one of the interesting angles is the ability to make
smart cities that will have sensors and wireless antennas throughout the city.
“You can’t stop technology when it has
more good related to it then bad, the good will always win so it will transform
cities entirely in terms of everything, like I said you put a little wireless
guy on a light pole I can stop a lot of crime, I really can,” Wellman said.
Wellman also discussed the Internet's
benefits to education and research and that's something John Maher can speak to
as well. He's Marshall University’s Vice
President for Research. Marshall is
using Internet2 to more efficiently conduct research. Internet2 is soley used
by educational institutions and the information is passed much faster than the
internet the public uses which is clogged with many other types of websites.
“We were able to obtain a cyber-infrastructure
grant to Marshall University, have allowed us to bring Internet2 to the campus
and have allowed us to start the process of bring Marshall University in to the
modern cyber-infrastructure world,” Maher said.
This was the first cyber-infrastructure conference
held at Marshall.