Guten Tag, Welcome!

My name is Sven van der Meer. I am a scientist, researcher, and developer looking at (network and service) management from theory to execution. From a management perspective, I am interested in architectures, patterns, domain-driven design, languages, autonomic networking, control loops, analytics, and context-awareness.

Science and Research

Since 2011 I work as a master engineer and team leader in the Ericsson Network Management Lab (NM-Lab), based on Athlone, Ireland. In the NM-Lab, we started designing a closed control loop pattern called Sahara, which resulted into a major contribution to Ericsson's COMPA architecture. We then moved to adaptive policies; a topic I've been working on for more than 10 years now. We developed a Unifying Policy Theory (UPT) and did build an Adaptive Policy EXecution (APEX) engine. The APEX software is originally published on Github. In this context, my team is heavily involved in the Linux Foundation project ONAP, mainly the Policy Framework. APEX is now part of the ONAP Policy Framework.

I am also involved in advancing RINA, the Recursive InterNetwokring architecture. Here, I contribute to the Pouzin Society, mainly via European projects (FP7 PRISTINE, H2020 ARCFIRE). We gained significant knowledge from the scientific, research, and development activities in the RINA community. Our particular interest is in advancing network management, as in decreasing variance and increasing invariance. This work also informs the product road map of Ericsson network management product my team is contributing to.

Science and research is nothing without teaching. Unfortunately, my industry position does not allow me to spend much time on formal teaching. I did teach courses at TU Berlin and WIT, on management of distributed systems, broadband networks, and ubiquitous computing. Supervising was also a large part of both jobs. These days, I use tutorials and presentations for teaching and education. I can't say that I am an educator, but I certainly aspire to be one.

in real Life

Unfortunately, I am not much of an artist; neither in painting, music, fashion, gardening, nor cooking. I have developed a personal style for technical drawings, that's as much as I was able to develop some artistic capabilities. Though I can appreciate paintings being particularly fascinated by 17th century Dutch artist. Vermeer van Delft being my favourite painter. Have you seen Tim Jenison trying to understand how to paint like Vermeer? This is a captivating documentary about the process he went throug with some spectacular results. You can find the description at the movie database here.

Gardening

Gardening is part of family life today, because when we bought the house it was to a large extend for the garden. Great size and setting and essentially a green lawn with lots of potential to develop an actual garden. Being the help and the trainee, I started taking measurements, drawing some layout, and window-shop in every garden centre within a 1-day-driving-range. That was easy. Then came the digging, which turned out to be quite tough due to tons of stones. And then came the larger projects, presented to me over the years, none of which I never would have imagined seeing myself doing.

Now we have vegetable plots build as raised beds (initially 3, 4.2m x 0.9m, then 3 smaller ones 1m2 each). And a pond (roughly 3.2m by 2.0m and some 70cm deep in the middle). And a decking area with a retaining wall (60cm high and 10m long) for raised planting, overall some 25 m2 and a large triangular pergola in one corner. And two compost heaps, which turn out to be extremely productive. All other gardening activities still require substantial supervision. I am having trouble to separate the useful and ornamental plants from weed.

Cooking

As for cooking, I am getting better by the year. Cooking accidents seem to happen less often than in the past. The best combination of gardening and cooking comes at harvest time. Onions, garlic, faber beans, peas, carrotts, artichoke, and of course potatoes grow pretty good. Some potatoes did grow out of peals simply thrown into one of our vegetable beds. The two varieties of raspberries (one white and one red) are now the favourite target of the local blackbirds. The same happened to a few wild strawberry plants (if you get one of those strawberries before the 'thiefs', they are delicious). All of that is 100% organic.

Bird and Wildlife Watching

There are not many activies as relaxing (and educating) as watching wildlife. A good quarter of the plants in our garden have been selected because they support bumblebees, bees, and butterflies from spring to autumn. The wooden cover of our retaining wall provides good housing for a small species of wasps. In some years they also nest in the larger garden wall. Our pond supports multiple species of dragonflies.

In the middle of the garden we have erected a bird house for feeding, frequented by sparrows, finches, and sometimes doves. At its bottom we maintain a larger table that attracts blackbirds and pigeons. Old bread and fruits (apples!) do the trick. Since we have a lot of insects and snales in the garden, we tend to get a resident robin (in some years even two) and visiting thrushs. We have had a wren in the garden in some seasons as well. Near the house, we keep on filling three to four bird feeders with peanuts, sunflower seeds, and other bird food. This invites sparrows, starlings, sometimes doves, and formost tits (great tits, blue tits, and coal tits). Finches come and go: we had chaffinche, greenfinch (less and less), bullfinch, and in some years goldfinch in the garden. A pair of blackcaps usually passes through in Autumn.

Once a falcon landed on our bird house in the middle of the garden, never saw it again. But we can spot buzzards quite often high in the sky. They probably nest somewhere in the Comeragh Mountains.