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As a MOREnet customer, how do I get access to Internet2?
As an Internet2 Sponsored Educational Group Participant (SEGP), MOREnet provides access for all its customers to the Internet2 backbone network. MOREnet's backbone connection to Internet2 is through the GigaPoP located in Kansas City and supported by the Great Plains Network (GPN), a consortium of Great Plains states dedicated to supporting scientific research through the use of networking technology. Members of the GPN include Arkansas, Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, Oklahoma and South Dakota. GPN has an OC-12 (622 Mbps) link to the Internet2 Abilene network.

With Internet2 access, MOREnet customers are able to take advantage of applications that require end-to-end, high-capacity bandwidth and robust network capabilities. Advanced applications enable collaboration among people and interactive access to information and resources in ways not possible on today's Internet. They deliver qualitative and quantitative improvements in how we conduct research and engage in teaching and learning. Moreover, they require advanced networks to function properly.

What are some of the applications that Internet2 enables?
Virtual Reality (VR)
Virtual reality is the simulation of a real or imagined environment that can be experienced visually in the three dimensions of width, height and depth. VR may also provide an interactive visual experience in full real-time motion with sound, touch and other forms of feedback. A virtual reality system uses stereoscopic goggles that provide the 3-D imagery and some sort of tracking device, which may include goggles for tracking head and body movement or a "data glove" that tracks hand movements. The glove lets participants point to and manipulate computer-generated objects displayed on tiny monitors inside the goggles.

Teleimmersion combines aspects of virtual reality and videoconferencing. It enables users at geographically distributed sites to collaborate in real time in a shared, simulated hybrid environment — as if they were in the same physical room. Teleimmersion is the ultimate synthesis of media technologies:

  • 3-D environment scanning
  • Projective and display technologies
  • Tracking technologies
  • Audio technologies
  • Robotics and haptics, the science of applying touch (or tactile) sensation and control to interaction with computer applications

Remote Instrumentation
Many scientific instruments connected to Internet2 can be operated remotely. Examples include:

  • NanoManipulator
  • Mauna Kea Observatories and the MKOCN based in the University of Hawaii's Institute for astronomy. The Mauna Kea Observatory website enables remote observation and immediate data transfer over the Internet.

Will Internet2 replace the current commercial Internet?
Internet2 will not replace the Internet. Internet2 brings together institutions and resources from academia, industry and government to develop new technologies and capabilities that can then be deployed in the global Internet. Close collaboration with Internet2 corporate members will ensure that new applications and technologies are rapidly deployed throughout the Internet. Just as e-mail and the World Wide Web are legacies of earlier investments in academic and federal research networks, the legacy of Internet2 will be to expand the possibilities of the broader Internet.

Why was Internet2 developed?
The present Internet-once a research and development hotbed-has evolved into a production environment too clogged and slow to allow for effective research, testing and instruction. Internet2 carries advanced network applications that take advantage of fiber optics, Gigabit routers, and advanced networking protocols through uncongested links. It moves large data sets rapidly, and enables access to remote shared applications and resources that the commodity Internet cannot support including (but not limited to) collaborative applications and instruction; interactive video; high-fidelity multi-channel audio; real-time access to remote resources; large-scale, multi-site computation and database processing; teleimmersion and shared virtual reality.

What does Internet2 "look like" from a user perspective?
From the user perspective, accessing Internet2 will be transparent. You will use the same applications (i.e., Web browsers and e-mail clients) that you currently use on Internet1 with improved performance. There is nothing that the user will need to "do" differently to access and use Internet2.

Users will however experience a more reliable, "steady-state" network that is less congested and free from commercial traffic. For comparison's sake, imagine "driving" on Internet1 as analogous to driving on a 4-lane highway in St. Louis during rush hour. Imagine "driving" on Internet2 as analogous to driving on a rural 4-lane in Western Kansas.

Will the bandwidth of my connection to MOREnet automatically increase?
The current physical connections that MOREnet customers have to the MOREnet backbone will remain unchanged unless the site specifically requests and acquires additional bandwidth. Sites will need to evaluate the applications that they expect to use and determine the network requirements that will allow those applications to work well. To appropriately take advantage of the capabilities that I2 provides, sites may need to explore upgrading their existing network infrastructures.

MOREnet's backbone connection to Internet2 is through the GigaPoP located in Kansas City and supported by the Great Plains Network (GPN), a consortium of Great Plains states dedicated to supporting scientific research through the use of networking technology. Members of the GPN include Arkansas, Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, Oklahoma and South Dakota. GPN has an OC-12 (622 Mbps) link to the Internet2 Abilene network.

Will I have to pay additional fees to be able access to Internet2 through MOREnet?
No. MOREnet customers will not have to pay any additional fees for access to Internet2. In the MOREnet budget, funding was allocated to connect Missouri to the Great Plains Network via MOREnet. MOREnet provides I2 access to Missouri participants by allocating a portion of its state backbone to I2 efforts.

What makes the I2 K20 Initiative unique?

  • It is about the intersection of educational research, practice and a new generation of advanced network capabilities.
  • It is not just about using transformative technologies, but using them in transformative ways.
  • It is where the interests of higher education and K-12 communities, libraries, museums, government, research and funding agencies as well as technologists and research and corporate partners converge.

How can I participate or get started on an Internet2 K20 project?
One of MOREnet's roles in the I2 K20 project will be to facilitate strong working relationships between Missouri's K-12 and higher education institutions. We continually seek to gain input on the kinds of applications that are important to customers. For a list of other Internet2 projects going on around the U.S. visit the Internet2 website.

We encourage participation in the development of new applications. Please let us know of projects that you are interested in starting, or areas that you would be interested in learning about existing applications/resources.

What is MOREnet's Internet2 routing policy?
MOREnet has never officially documented its routing policy. Past and current routing techniques have been primarily based on geographic boundaries; Internet connections in a regional hub have been the preferred ingress/egress points for customers served in that region with other regional connections serving as backup paths. Having been presented at various member meetings in the past, this strategy is fairly well understood in the MOREnet community. The techniques have worked well and no changes are anticipated regarding MOREnet's Internet1 routing implementation. However, recent and planned Internet2 activities have introduced some new complexities. For more information, see the routing strategy supporting the MOREnet community participating in Internet2 activities document.

Will intra-state traffic within Missouri run over I2? For example, if I send e-mail from Jefferson City to someone in Chillicothe, will that go over I2?
No, traffic that travels among MOREnet customers will travel via the statewide MOREnet network. Any traffic that is headed out to Internet2 sites or Sponsored Educational Group Participants sites (SEGPs) will be routed over the Internet2 network.