Launch of “eduroam” services in India by ERNET India


You cant do today’s job with yesterday’s methods and be in business tomorrow.

IT and Telecom  both are inextricably intertwined providing the underpinnings for waves of new discovery, disruptive technologies and novel innovations.

As the name suggests “eduroam” is education roaming that can benefit limitlessly.

eduroam

imagesWe are so used to all the electronic and computer aided programs that we hardly think of thanking James Watt and Graham Bell for playing the vital role in the life that is led by millions across the globe. Their contribution in science led to invention of the most comprehensive mode of communication called the “Internet”,  the borderless cyberspace,  a tool that has all the ingredients to bind the globe into a small community, a well connected and a close-knit family. The IT skills in India are one of the most unmatchable attainments in the world in terms of quality and quantity. But here the challenge is not in solving the problem, rather to determine the problem itself.

Our  concern should be about its penetration in the society and it’s adoption demographics. we should not forget that the essence of communication is in the very DNA of each and every person on this earth to communicate with each other without going into frivolous parameters decided by the Society.  Hence the importance of open, accessible, and relevant communications is undeniable for fostering National development, social fulfillment and human dignity. The more communicated and well connected a society , the more opportunities it shall generate.

This is were Eduroam comes into play!!!

Eduroam is secure worldwide federated roaming service developed for the international research and education community that provides secure network access operated by SP (service providers or “visited institutions”) that is authenticated by a  user with credentials issued by  his IdP (identity provider or  “Home Institutions”) via Cohesive set of Roaming Operators (RO) or Roaming confederations (RC).

Eduroam is a worldwide federation of RADIUS servers that facilitates network access for roaming academic affiliates using IEEE 802.1x as the vehicle.

Often, infrastructure leads applications; and at times application demands lead infrastructure and Services. Thanks to the combination of emerging trends in high speed networks, computing, collaboration tools, internet,  sciences and applications that Eduroam services can be implemented in bioinformatics, weather & climate prediction, education, research, healthcare,  financial inclusion, service delivery, materials and medical sciences and what not!!

The motivation for technical changes have led to eduroam especially when  these changes  are and can be feasible, using state-of-the-art software, today.

Advantages:  hassle free Wi-Fi access for institutional faculties, be it be students, researchers or staff when they are on the go, Allowing participating institutions to obtain Internet connectivity across campus and when visiting other participating institutions by simply opening their laptop.  provides a simple and automatic guest provisioning system.  provide value-added services to institutions .

With hundreds of thousands of wireless access-points sharing a common SSID, eduroam acts as one large, world-wide, wireless hotspot.

ernet india

Eduroam facilitates travelers from academic institutions by allowing them to gain network access with minimal configuration and no need for the visited institution to grant them the access explicitly.  This benefits visiting faculty, academics traveling for conferences and collaborative work, study abroad students, visitors attending NCAA activities, and even regional academic exchange.

By joining eduroam you extend the network to visitors at your institution without adding any additional maintenance responsibilities to your IT staff.  Moreover, by extending the network, you help to guarantee access to your own students and faculty while they are abroad.

Eduroam has very high security standards. All data that moves across an eduroam network is encrypted end-to-end using technology called 802.1x. Someone with special snooping tools would see nothing more than a jumble. man_on_phone rural

Benefits for the user:

  • Network access at all participating organisations – worldwide
  • No need to get a guest account set up at every organisation visited
  • Same username and password regardless of location
  • Free at point of use

If you are a visitor from a university, college or other institution supporting eduroam and have configured your laptop as instructed by your local computing or information service then it should automatically connect to our wireless network as soon as you open a browser. The advantages of eduroam are that you do not need to obtain a Lapwing wireless ticket from your library and access is available so long as you are affiliated with your home institution.

Eduroam would enable a pervasive internet usage, accelerate more inter dependent economies.

This again brings us back to the fact that just by having a solution does not mean that we will succeed. We should understand the problem, with the local flavour so that we can accordingly dish out a tailor made solution.

Eduroam is a consortium that began in Europe in 2003 and has spread to academic institutions in 54 countries worldwide including India.

India is the seventh largest and second most populous Country in the world. Today India is one of the most exciting emerging markets in the world. Skilled, managerial and technical manpower that matches the best available in the world, and, a middle class whose size exceeds the population of the USA or the European Union, provide India with a distinct cutting edge in global competition.

Finally, it is important to understand that “Internet” is “not a ONE TIME INVENTION” rather a tool that needs to constantly evolve time and again to cater different ad-hoc tastes of people and occasionally a re-invention to change how we communicate and how we think. That’s why the Internet and services like eduroam has to be taken as the biggest Invention than anything else on this planet, simply because it touches the lives of people and it is empowering people across globe.

Launch of eduraom services in India will identify opportunities for collaboration between international research and education community that enables students, researchers and staff from participating institutions globally.

Let me conclude by saying what Alvin Toffler said :

“The illiterate of the 21st century will not be those who cannot read and write, but those who cannot learn, unlearn and relearn.”

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