This reflective journal covers approximately the second 50 hours of my internship with NIWC Atlantic. About a fourth of this time was spent in office for various reasons while the remainder was remote. Some of this period still consisted of me reading policy documents, but I also had the opportunity to observe work on an aircraft carrier.
In the third week, I viewed a document used to guide assessments of Naval Afloat Systems. Many of the inputs are raw data that is analyzed and presented in a report. Given that I have performed similar tasks in the past and written analysis formulas myself, I am familiar with the best ways of presenting this data. As such, I presented the idea of using graphs to allow report readers to digest the information visually rather than numerically. My team lead thought this was a great idea and assured me we would be implementing this in the coming weeks.
On the aircraft carrier, I watched a turn-over of systems from our team to active-duty sailors. This involves handing over control of the systems and network services after they have been properly assessed for compliance. As I was able to be present in the server room aboard the ship, I was able to actively view the hardware and ask questions about the network infrastructure. Some of the theory I had read up on (and mentioned in my previous reflection) was very useful here, as it allowed me to ask more in-depth questions about the architecture specific to US Naval Afloat networks. While there were some technical issues with the turn-over, it also allowed me to see typical IT troubleshooting in-action.
This experience reinforced my self-imposed requirement to ask as many questions as possible. The only way to learn more about the industry is through experience; the only way to get experience is to remain curious and interact with the people and environment around me.