The ACM SIGCOMM Test of Time Award recognizes papers published 10 to 12 years in the past in Computer Communication Review or any SIGCOMM sponsored or co-sponsored conference that is deemed to be an outstanding paper whose contents are still a vibrant and useful contribution today.
The past recipients of the ACM SIGCOMM Test of Time Paper Award are:
This paper led to a resurgence of interest in the topic of separated data and control planes to better manage networks that developed into Software Defined Networking (SDN).
"Sizing router buffers", by Guido Appenzeller, Isaac Keslassy, and Nick McKeown. SIGCOMM 2004.
This paper questioned the old rule-of-thumb for buffering at routers and contributed theory and experiments to show much less buffering is needed. It has ongoing relevance to issues such as bufferbloat and small buffers in commodity switching chips.
This year's Test of Time Award Committee was David Wetherall (Google, chair), Jon Crowcroft (U.Cambridge), Srinivasan Seshan (CMU), and Ellen Zegura (Georgia Tech).
XCP opened the door to a "second generation" of congestion control papers, building upon related TCP and ECN work, and with an understanding of traffic management not requiring per-flow state. The decoupling of congestion control from transfer efficiency underpins many of the subsequent TCP approaches, and influenced the TCP implementations in common use today.
Rocketfuel contributed methods to make efficient measurements for ascertaining Internet router-level topologies, useful for the modeling and simulation of routing, transport protocols, and graph evolution, to name a few areas. In addition, this effort produced a dataset used by a number of subsequent efforts. One recent (2011) text describes this dataset as: "the most trustable existing dataset for Internet service provider (ISP) networks." Rocketfuel topologies have also been incorporated into popular simulation tools such as ns-3.
In 2006, SIGCOMM also presented the test-of-time award to the authors of the notable papers from 1969 to 1995 that were published in a special issue of ACM SIGCOMM Computer Communications Review in January of 1995. The papers thus recognized were as follows:
The award is given annually and consists of a custom glass award and reprinting the paper in Computer Communication Review. The paper will be chosen by an award committee appointed by the SIGCOMM Award Committee Chair.
To assist in the process, below are links to the tables of contents of the eligible issues of Computer Communication Review and SIGCOMM proceedings.
For catalyzing a qualitative change in the nature of experimental networking research. By overcoming barriers to planetary scale experimentation and deployment, the authors---and their enduring testbed artifact---ushered in a new era of empirically validated network protocol design, catalyzed community-wide attention to the thoughtful construction and employment of appropriate research infrastructures, testbeds, and measurement platforms, and helped to foster a now vibrant research area focused on understanding Internet-scale network phenomena.
For anchoring a line of network architecture research that represented a sharp conceptual break from the internet-centric focus of the community at the time, substantially broadened the scope of applicability of networked computer communication, and remains a vital and active research topic today serving domains ranging from resource-poor rural environments to interplanetary space science support.
The "Tussle in Cyberspace" paper observed that different parties involved in the Internet's evolution can have interests that were directly at odds and that the conflict between these interests has a direct effect on the success or failure of efforts to update, rework or add features to the network. The paper, and its expanded version published a few years later in IEEE/ACM Tranactions on Networking, forced network architects and protocol designers to recognize the swirl of conflicting demands that could enable or derail their vision, and brought the term "tussle" into widespread use as a reminder of those demands.
Chord: A Scalable Peer-to-peer Lookup Service for Internet Applications, Ion Stoica, Robert Morris, David Karger, M. Frans Kaashoek, Hari Balakrishnan, Proc. ACM SIGCOMM 2001.