December 2012


OFC/NFOEC 2013: Showcasing the Latest in Optical Networking and Communications

Optical communications and networking professionals from around the world will once again convene at the Optical Fiber Communication/National Fiber Optic Engineers Conference (OFC/NFOEC) for an exciting week of networking, high-quality science and a world-class exposition to showcase the latest developments in this continually evolving field. Cutting-edge technology and vital information at the forefront of communications will be presented through hundreds of peer-reviewed technical and invited presentations, an extensive exhibit hall with more than 550 leading optical communication companies, and numerous workshops, panels and short courses. OFC/NFOEC will be held at the Anaheim Convention Center March 17-21in Anaheim, Calif.

Plenary Session

OFC/NFOEC draws plenary session speakers who are thought leaders in the networking and communications fields. This year’s keynote speakers will provide insight on timely topics such as broadband deployment, software-defined networking (SDN), and global network connectivity.

Caio Bonilha Rodrigues, CEO of Telebras, Brazil’s federally-owned telecommunications service provider, will share the challenges faced by the Telebras team in the deployment of Brazil’s 20,000 miles of national broadband backbone. Bonilha has consulted in a number of different countries including Brazil, Argentina, Chile, Bolivia, Spain, Kenya, and Angola, shaping his knowledge of optical technology, international leadership, and business strategy.

Nick McKeown, professor of electrical engineering and computer science at Stanford University, will focus on software-defined transport networks. McKeown is credited with co-developing SDN—a way to operate network switches using a logically centralized controller—which challenged the vertically integrated approach to the switch and router design of the past 20 years. He leads a research group at Stanford University concentrated on SDN and shaping the architecture of tomorrow’s Internet.

Brian Protiva, CEO of ADVA Optical Networking in Germany will discuss how the global demand for bandwidth and the resulting optical communications technologies present inroads into new market vehicles and sources of revenue that systems and components providers can take advantage of. Protiva co-founded ADVA Optical Networking in 1994. The company is now a global market leader in Ethernet access devices and one of the top players in metro Wavelength Division Multiplexing (WDM) worldwide.

Special Symposia

A symposium on Enabling the Cloud will provide in-depth discussions of how networks can enable the cloud, with specific focus on new network technologies both within data centers and between data centers.   Another symposium on Convergence of Wireless and Optical Networking will explore the convergence from different angles such as key 4G/5G mobile technologies, blueprints for optical access, integration between wireless and optical networking, and solving the bandwidth bottleneck in the backhaul.

Market Watch

This three-day series of panel sessions features a diverse group of speakers from the research, industry, and business communities. Highlights include the State of the Industry panel, which will discuss the current economic environment and its effect on the optics industry, a panel focused on the need for low cost, high-speed pluggable optics for intra-data center connections, and a panel to address the advances in component technology. Speakers from Google, Corning Inc., Ericsson and others will appear.

Service Provider Summit

The Service Provider Summit is a dynamic program that covers topics of particular interest to CTOs, network architects, network designers and technologists within the service provider and carrier sector. This year’s keynote presentation “What Cloudonomics Means for the Network” will be given by Joe Weinman, the driving force behind Telx’s fast-growing cloud services business development and author of “Cloudonomics: The Business Value of Cloud Computing.” Panels will focus on network monetization and service provider acquisition and integration strategies.

Data Communications Programming

This year’s OFC/NFOEC will offer a wide range of technical programs and workshops focused on datacom. In addition to the plenary talk from McKeown, five short courses covering cloud computing, datacenters and SDN will feature content and conversation about these growing areas. New short courses this year include “Fundamentals of Super Computing,” “The Evolution of Network Architecture toward Cloud-centric Applications,” and “Software Defined Networking and OpenFlow.”

Speakers from companies including Oracle, IBM, HP, Dell and Fujitsu have also been invited, to make for a diverse range of programs, technical talks and workshops available to attendees interested in datacom and related fields.

Laurent Schares with IBM and Loukas Paraschis with Cisco will moderate a workshop that asks “Where Can Optics Make the Biggest Difference for Data Centers?” where leading experts can debate which emerging optical technologies and networking concepts will have the greatest impact in the design and operations of next-generation data centers.  In addition, the IEEE Cloud Computing Initiative-sponsored session will focus on advancing optical solutions in cloud computing, communications and networking.

Show Floor Activities

The industry’s most comprehensive exhibit hall provides attendees the opportunity to learn about the state of the industry, emerging trends, and hear high-level takes on how to tackle today’s toughest business challenges, all while interacting with leaders from more than 550 participating companies.

In addition to Market Watch and Service Provider Summit, other floor activities will include a workshop and panel discussion on photonic startups and entrepreneurship with input from seasoned entrepreneurs, Plastic Optical Fiber (POF) Symposium, two sessions on monetizing cloud services organized by Juniper Networks, a presentation from the Optical Internetworking Forum on next generation interconnects, and more.

For researchers, innovators and engineers in the data, communications and IT infrastructure fields, OFC/NFOEC is the only venue that brings together professionals in the optical networking and data communications fields for exploratory discussions, technical workshops, and access to groundbreaking, up-to-the-minute research from the industry’s best and brightest.  Attendees can expect OFC/NFOEC 2013 will maintain the standard of excellence set by the past 38 years of conference programs.

Brielle Day is the Optical Society’s (OSA) public relations specialist