E141 - David Ramsden at Formula 128 November, 2023
In the latest episode of The Route to Networking podcast, our host Seb Dean is joined by a special guest, David Ramsden, who holds the position of Senior Network Engineer at Formula 1. In this episode, they discuss the origins of David's career and his journey to becoming a part of the Formula 1 team. Additionally, David shares insights about his role at Formula 1 and highlights the importance of the networking team in this particular industry.
David Ramsden, the Senior Network Engineer at Formula 1, had the privilege of growing up in the 80s, which he considers the best time to come of age, especially when it came to the world of computing. It was during this era that personal computing started to gain momentum, so there was no better time to get into the industry.
During his school years, David's love for technology led him to look for work experience opportunities. He landed an opportunity at a local company called Internet UK. Unfortunately, Internet UK eventually went out of business, but this didn't deter him, instead, he soon found another company, one that specialised in providing IT support to small and medium-sized enterprises. This role exposed him to a variety of IT aspects, but it was networking that caught his interest the most.
With a clear sense of direction, he decided to further his education and pursue a BTEC National Diploma in Computing at college. Upon graduating from college, he decided to go to university, enrolling in a program focused on computer networking and management design. What's more, the company where he had been working since his school days offered him a sponsorship throughout his university years, providing both financial support and hands-on experience. Consequently, he remained with the company for six years after earning his degree.
He advocates for the benefits of a "sandwich year" at university, where students can gain real-world experience, enhancing their qualifications and understanding of the industry they aim to enter.
After spending six years at the same company, he decided it was time to broaden his horizons and focus on larger enterprises. His journey led him to work with a number of notable organisations, including Estée Lauder. These experiences allowed him to work with some of the world's biggest brands and expand his expertise in networking.
Today, David holds a big position as a Senior Network Engineer at Formula 1. This opportunity began with a simple message from an ex-colleague. The role he plays at Formula 1 is nothing short of amazing, as he is at the heart of ensuring the network infrastructure that drives the world's premier motorsport event runs seamlessly. Without a strong network, Formula 1 simply couldn't function. The network isn't just about facilitating the transmission of data; it's about safety, performance, and the overall experience of the sport.
One of the standout moments in David's career was a challenge that Formula 1 faced. This year, the historic Imola event in Italy was cancelled due to severe flooding. The network team at Formula 1 was prepared to deliver, but they were asked to evacuate due to the flooding. It was a tense situation, as the safety of all involved was paramount. Fortunately, the flooding didn't cause huge damage, but it certainly left a mark on David's career.
Among his many pearls of wisdom, he shares advice for anyone seeking a career in this industry. One of the key pieces of advice that he offers is to be knowledgeable about industry buzzwords, such as "PTP" or Precision Time Protocol. In the world of broadcasting, maintaining perfect synchronization between video and audio is important. Multicast is another buzzword that he emphasises as being important in the TV, media, and broadcast industry.
Tune in on the 05/12/2023 to hear the full episode!