A Day in the Life of a Chinese Engineer

A Day in the Life of a Chinese Engineer

Ming Gao is a system engineer based in Shanghai. Before finishing his degree in the university, Ming knew exactly where his interests and strengths lay, the field of computer science. He knew very well that he wanted to become an engineer. 

Before joining Rahi in September 2017, Ming worked for an automobile manufacturer as an IT operations engineer. He was mainly in charge of Windows server and related hardware devices. For Ming, life at Rahi has been very special and different than his previous job. Not only can he continue his interest in the IT field,he also has gained more opportunities to improve himself in his expertise and communication skills.

What inspired your decision to become an IT system engineer?

Ming: This is a job that combines my expertise and interest. My major in university was Network Engineering, plus I’m more interested in computer science and relevant industry. Therefore, doing what I do now is just a very natural path for me.

What are the essential skills an IT system engineer must have?

Ming: Professional knowledge and communication skills are all a must. In my opinion, being able to communicate smoothly with customers, understand and deliver the project to meet their needs, and solve their pain points, these are all the skills you need to be an IT system engineer. 

Is there anything special about working at Rahi Systems as an engineer?

Ming: First of all, there is a big difference in just what I do everyday. When I was an operations engineer, we only needed to be familiar with Windows servers and related hardware devices. Now at Rahi Systems, my job involves more data center solutions, ranging from infrastructure (for example, UPS, containment, floor, and data center power devices, etc.) to IT devices, storage, network and more. There are more things I need to know right now. 

When it comes to communication, I used to only have to communicate with our own team and vendors. Now at Rahi, I have to communicate more with our customers to understand their needs.  

What does a typical day for an IT system engineer look like?

Ming: Take my participation in a colo data center for example.

A few days before the deployment, we would communicate with the customers about the solution, in order to make sure their doubts about the project can all be solved, if any. After confirmation, we would send the final version to the customer. The work after that can be dissected into 5 parts. 

Check and count all the needed devices in the colo facility. If there is any problem, we would communicate with the logistics team to make sure everything is in the right place.

  1. Check the racks and cabinets. See if the environment is exactly like expected. If it is not the same, alter the solution and notice the customers. 
  2. Start installing, testing, and connecting the devices. Mark and sort out important cables. Take pictures of the environment after completing deployment and send to customers to confirm.
  3. Accompany customers in the testing process. Make some changes if necessary, in order to make sure customers’ application is successfully deployed. 
  4. After testing, close cabinet doors and clean up the environment. Confirm with the customers that the project is finished.

    Sometimes, the field situation is not how customers expect it to be. This might be due to many reasons, such as the fact that they did not get accurate information. This can result in lack of accessories, or not being able to deploy the project as expected. Under this kind of circumstances, we need to find the right solution to it according to the field situation. During the whole process, we need to always keep in close contact with our customers, in order to make sure every aspect of their needs is satisfied. 

    What is your favorite part of your role with Rahi Systems? What are the challenges of it?

    Ming: I enjoy learning about new products and solutions, and incorporate these new technologies into data center environments. Thanks to Rahi’s rich global partnership, I can learn all this new knowledge through a lot of trainings from different vendors.

    Rahi’s partners are usually from outside of China, some of them do not have a location in China. The main challenges this brings are time differences and language barriers. But I also get benefits from it. One obvious example is that I need to talk with a lot of vendors, customers, and engineer team members from all around the world. For sure, this has helped improve my English skills a lot.   

    I look forward to seeing our Rahi team continue its expansion in the future. Being able to learn and grow together with them will be very exciting!

National Tech Day – Major Influential Days in History

National Tech Day – Major Influential Days in History

To celebrate National Technology Day, our Rahi Engineers are reflecting on some of the major technical advances in history! From the first electronic computer to the beginning of artificial intelligence, technology is constantly developing. 

Here is a recap over some of the most defining moments in history.

1800’s – The Computer 

The first computer that resembles our present-day machines was the Analytical Engine, invented by Charles Babbage between 1833 and 1871. After the Analytical Engine was invented, physicist John Atanasoff designed the first electronic digital computer in the 1930’s and 1940’s.

1857 – Sound Recording

France was a hot spot for sound in the 19th century. In 1857, French man Édouard-Léon Scott de Martinville invented a device for recording sound which he named the ‘Phonautograph’. Although, the problem with the phonautograph was that it did not play back recordings. Twenty years later in 1877, French man Charles Cross figured out how to record sound onto a cylinder. But at the same time, in 1877, inventor Thomas Edison beat him to it when he created a practical sound recording device called the ‘mechanical phonograph cylinder’. 

Early 1900’s –Visual Recording

The conception of visual recording was first thought of by John Logie Baird in the early 1900s. Baird’s inspiration stemmed from the ‘Nipkow Disk’, a mechanical device that turns images into scan lines. Baird combined this with his own electronic scanning technology. This was the beginning of the video camera we use today.

The 40’s -Transistor

In 1947, the American physicists John Bardeen, Walter Brattain, and William Shockley gave a demonstration of the first point-contact transistor, a small semiconductor device that changed the world. They received the 1956 Nobel Prize in Physics for their achievement.

The 50’s – Artificial intelligence

Norbert Wiener had a significant influence on the development of artificial intelligence. He was one of the first to theorise that all intelligent behavior was the result of feedback mechanisms. Following Wieners discovery formed the creation of ‘The Logic Theorist’ in 1955, designed by Newell and Simon. Which is considered the first AI program. However, the term artificial intelligence was not coined until the mid-1950s by John McCarthy, he defined it as “the science and engineering of making intelligent machines”.

The 60’s – Cloud Computing

In the 1960’s, cloud computing was invented by Joseph Carl Robnett Licklider who was often referred to as the ‘father of the internet’. Robnett Licklider was working on ARPANET, to connect people and data from anywhere at any time. 

The 80’s – World Wide Web

In 1989, Tim Berners-Lee invented the World Wide Web (www). Fun fact: The Web was originally developed so that scientists could share information on a global spectrum.

The 90’s – The IoT and WIFI (wireless network)

In 1990, John Romkey created a toaster that could be turned on and off using the internet for October 89′ INTEROP conference; bringing us the first Internet of Things device. WiFi was invented and available for the public in 1997, when a committee called 802.11 was created. This led to the creation of IEEE802. 11, which is a set of standards that define communication for Wireless Local Area Networks (WLANs).

The 00’s

The 2000’s were quite possibly one of the most defining decades of technological firsts. We were introduced to smartphones that connect us to the world from the tip of our fingers to social media channels. These were a culmination of the advances made over many decades from some of the world’s greatest minds.

As we enter 2020, Rahi Systems is excited to see what the future holds and we hope you enjoyed a look back over some of the most pivotal technological advances throughout history.