Meredith Whittaker, Google Research; Thomas Gideon, Open Technology Institute
Tuesday, November 20, 12:30 pm
Measurement Lab (M-Lab) is a collaborative effort founded by Vint Cerf and a large body of network researchers, dedicated to creating an Internet-scale ecosystem for truly open network measurement. In the policy space, this means the facts can speak for themselves, and the rhetoric can adapt. To make this happen, Measurement Lab allows researchers the ability to run open source broadband measurement tools on well-managed, near global infrastructure. All data collected by these tools is made publicly available. This public repository of M-Lab data comprises by far the biggest such resource on the planet (and other planets, I assume), with over 600 terabytes of raw, real-world, globally comparable network measurement data (!!). This data is being used by researchers as the basis for peer-reviewed papers furthering network science. It's also being used by governments and national regulators. Canada recently joined Greece, the US, and the European Union in choosing M-Lab and M-Lab's open data as the backbone of their upcoming broadband study. M-Lab's creates a model in which scientists, policy-makers, and consumers have access to good information drawn from the same pool of open, scientifically-sound broadband performance data. This means that conclusions made based on these data are verifiable, and that debate can focus on data, not hearsay. Very cool, right? So come learn about M-Lab's tools, M-Lab's data, how M-Lab is creating a paradigm for collaborative science as the foundation for good, data-based policy.
Meredith Whittaker is a Program Manager for Google Research. She leads initiatives related to Internet measurement, including managing Google's involvement in the M-Lab project, measurementlab.net. In this capacity she has worked closely with the academic community, policy-makers, consumer advocates, and national regulators across the globe to advise on scientifically verifiable broadband measurement and policy. She is also a frequent conference speaker, covering the intersection of Internet science and policy. Meredith has a background in literature and psychoanalytic theory. She joined Google in 2006 after completing her degree at UC Berkeley.
Thomas Gideon is the technical director for the Open Technology Institute at New America Foundation. As technical director, he is responsible for managing and supporting technological and data driven policy interventions, including the Commotion mesh wireless networking project, which focuses on connecting communities that are under served and at risk, and Measurement Lab, a network measurement research platform that has produced the largest cache of open broadband performance data on the planet. He also provides technical expertise to collaborate on issues around privacy, security, copyright, digital media and DRM.