The event ‘Twenty years of Internet in Sri Lanka’ was organized by the Internet Society Sri Lanka Chapter recently. The event was organized to look back at the achievements which established the internet in Sri Lanka over the last twenty years and to honour the pioneers who made this a reality in Sri Lanka.
Professor Rohan Samarajiva, Founding Chair LIRNEasia was one of those felicitated at the ceremony for his contribution to the development of networking and Internet in Sri Lanka. As reported in the Financial Times, speaking at the event Prof Samarajiva discussed the progress made by Sri Lanka and pointed out some of the issues faced by Asia today. “What we have found through our research at LIRNEasia is that today, the real problem is the internet’s international connectivity. If you can have some kind of Sri Lankan internet, where all the websites that you want to reach are within a special sphere, I think we’ll be able to do a decent job with our networks. But today with the problems of performance, the whole region has become a poor-performing internet hub with its poor international connectivity. When you run downloads using a local server, we get relatively good performance but when we use an international server, we get degraded performance,” he observed. Prof Samarajiva also discussed the progress made by Sri Lanka during the past two decades “I think we are making progress and facilities-based competition is occurring. We have got adequate cables and we are not a weak and a vulnerable country, but it will take some time to be reflected in price and quality differences.” he further stated.