terena networking conference 2009

Virtuality into Reality

an invitation from the Programme Committee

On behalf of the programme committee, it is my pleasure to invite you to the 12th TERENA Networking Conference (TNC 2009), to be hosted by the University of Málaga and RedIRIS, the Spanish national academic and research network, in Málaga, Spain, from 8 to 11 June 2009.

Over the past few years we have become accustomed to everything from computers to organisations being described as ‘virtual’, as it has become increasingly common to use networks and software to emulate these physical world entities. This has allowed many of the constraints of physical and geographical space to be removed: people and resources forming a virtual organisation do not need to be in the same location; virtual services can be in a different country or continent from their users; virtual machines and disks can be respectively much smaller and larger than their manufactured equivalents; virtual networks let users with different needs share the same networking equipment; many individuals now conduct their social and business lives in virtual worlds.

Both technology and society are now reaching a stage where these ‘virtual’ ideas can, and do, affect the real world. Technologies and systems that were formerly just concepts and research projects are now available for everyday use. This offers exciting possibilities - as research and education in all fields can take place without thinking about the technologies they are using - but also challenging problems, as our online activities become increasingly entangled with our real world lives. At this year’s conference we will be exploring the opportunities and challenges that these changes present.

TERENA conferences have been at the heart of developments in European research and education networking for more than two decades. Andalusia has been a fertile meeting place for cultures, ideas and technologies for more than thirty centuries. I look forward to meeting you there as we bring ‘Virtuality into Reality’.

Signature Programme Committee Chair

Andrew Cormack
TNC 2009 Programme Committee Chair