Industry visit for Computer Science students
A group of Year 12 computer science students recently spent the day at Oracle, hosted by Paul Hendrick (Principal Advanced Support Development Engineer, Performance Diagnostics).
Students heard from a number of speakers, including a graduate recruitment programme representative, about their jobs and some of Oracle’s projects, software and hardware.
They were also given a guided tour of a miniature server room, which provides current and prospective customers with the facilities to test the performance of Oracle products on the recommended hardware. Students were fascinated in particular by a glass wall that could go from opaque to transparent at the press of a button.
In a different building on the Oracle campus, the students got to see, through a wall of glass, a large server room where Oracle runs customer systems for clients all over the world. This server room was too dangerous to go into, not only because the equipment is so expensive but also because the noise levels in the room are dangerously high.
Oracle had taken some of their equipment out of service for the students to see up close. They demonstrated their own SPARC CPU, designed and manufactured by Oracle specifically for their types of software and database servers. A real CPU architect gave the students a good overview of what is inside a server and showed what all the parts were for, including how important air-flow within the case is to keeping everything running at optimum temperatures. Students were also shown the similarities and differences between the Oracle servers that use their own custom CPU and those using the standard Intel server CPUs.
Simon Barratt, teacher of computer science and ICT, said: “A great time was had by all and the students were excellent ambassadors for the UTC. During discussions, students have noted how interesting and useful the day was, full of useful learning and experiences.”
Student George Reid said: “The trip to Oracle Reading was a valuable and enjoyable experience. It was great to learn how and why big data centers are used as well as being given an insight into what they offer as a company.”