Lecture: 3 hours

Discussion: 1 hour

Prerequisite: Course ECS 152B or ECS 165A

Grading: Letter; homework (30%), project (40%), technical paper presentation (30%)

Catalog Description:
Wide-area distributed information systems, data broadcast, multicast, publish/subscribe, service differentiation, information retrieval, web caching. Offered in alternate years.

The intend of this course is to explore challenges and research issues that arise when scaling information systems technology to a widely-distributed environment such as the Internet. The objective is to prepare students to conduct research in related issues.

Expanded Course Description:

  1. Introduction
    1. Overview of Wide-Area Distributed Systems
    2. WWW Application Characteristics, Performance
  2. Data Delivery for Client/Server Architectures
    1. Unicast: Basic Approach
    2. Multicast: Reliable Multicast, MBone
    3. Data Broadcast: Technology
  3. Some Research Issues for Scalable Solutions
    1. Service Differentiation
    2. Information Retrieval
    3. Publish/Subscribe
    4. Web Caching
  4. Extended Factors
    1. Multimedia Application
    2. Mobility
    3. Next Generation Internet

A selection of technical papers addressing specific topics will be used. No textbook is required.

Course Design:
This course is intended to be highly interactive. The main activity of the lectures will be discussions based around a set of papers. All students are required to read technical papers, to answer specific questions, and to prepare new questions prior to class discussions. In addition, each student is required to lead the discussion on one or two of these technical papers. There are no exams.

The project constitutes a detailed literature survey that identifies key problems that has been studied in wide-area distributed information systems, a detailed experimentation design and initial results. Students are encouraged to suggest their own topic at the proposal stage.

Engineering Design Statement:
Projects include implementation, measurements, and/or literature survey of a topic that can be chosen from a set of suggestions.

ABET Category Content:

Engineering Science: 2 units
Engineering Design: 2 units


Prepared by: D. Aksoy (September 2002)

Overlap Statement:
There is no significant overlap with any other course.