"TICAL has been growing and improving year after year," says the Director of Informatics of the Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile, Roberto Price, who has participated in the last two editions of the Conference and this year integrates its Program Committee.
Hi, Roberto! Please tell us a little about yourself and your formation.
I have a degree in Physics from the Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile (PUC). Then I did a Masters in Engineering (Digital Communications) at PUC and also a Diploma in Business Administration in the Universidad Adolfo Ibáñez.
I developed my professional career at PUC, on different topics. During the first stage I worked on the development of electronic systems for industrial and of Defense applications. I worked in the design and manufacture of electronic circuits, both analog and digital, for signal processing and automatic control, design of control systems based on microprocessors, embedded software development (assembler, C, C ++), system development software with Pascal, C, C ++ digital signal. Later I was in charge of the administrative information systems at the University, where the responsibility of the unit was the development, maintenance and operation of computer systems supporting management and corporate databases. Then I became CIO of the PUC Informatics Unit that is responsible for all ICT services of the University.
What was your first contact with the advanced networks and how do you evaluate its development since then?
PUC was not a REUNA partner until a few years ago when because of its participation in the NLHPC project we joined the advanced networks. However not being part of REUNA since its inception, we have clearly seen a significant evolution in the contribution of REUNA and the advanced networks in terms of connectivity, integration and collaborative work between universities and scientific centers. In an environment in which commercial Internet traffic is increasingly congested, it is essential to have academic networks that enable safe and seamless exchange of academic and scientific content.
In a context like this, what is the importance of TICAL for the development of the networks and the professionals in the field of ICT?
TICAL is perhaps the only activity that brings together ICT managers and professionals in Latin America, and as such it offers a great opportunity to share problems and progress with colleagues and institutions of similar economic and technological development in culture and language. The reality of our continent is very different from what happens in most developed countries. For example, the cost of bandwidth or the availability of top-level (and Spanish speaking) consultants, are problems that developed countries do not have and very often they are relevant to us.
You participated in the last two editions of TICAL, and this year you are part of the Program Committee. What lessons have you learned from these different experiences?
I think TICAL has been growing and improving year after year. Steadily increases the amount of papers, the variety of topics and the number of attendees. Contacts and personal knowledge sharing with colleagues are established, which greatly facilitates subsequent relationships in a more permanent and fluid way. I think TICAL can become a benchmark in the region, not only in terms of ICT professionals but as an authorized voice in fornt of the directors of our universities.
Personally and professionally, what are your expectations for this TICAL2015 to be held in Chile? Why Chileans should participate?
I think this year we will have a top level conference with novel issues and where the development of communities or of groups of interest on various topics will deepen. I hope that we have a great turnout. Also, as Chileans, we have a big challenge because both in Cancun and Cartagena de Indias very good conferences were organized, with excellent and cozy hosts, so we have to do it very good in Viña del Mar .
Regarding the participation of Chileans, is a great chance that this version of TICAL takes place in Chile. This facilitates the participation of Chilean colleagues as the costs of participation and travel times are lower. So I invite you to book these days to fully experience this new TICAL.