CCR Papers from October 2013

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  • Dina Papagiannaki
    Welcome to the October 2013 issue of ACM Computer Communications Review. This issue includes 1 technical peer-reviewed paper, and 3 editorial notes. The topics include content distribution, SDN, and Internet Exchange Points (IXPs).
    One of my goals upon taking over as editor of CCR was to try to make it the place where we would publish fresh, novel ideas, but also where we could exchange perspectives and share lessons. This is the reason why for the past 9 months the editorial board and I have been working on what we call the "interview section" of CCR. This October issue carries our first interview note, captured by Prof. Joseph Camp, from SMU.
    Prof. Camp recently interviewed Dr. Ranveer Chandra, from MSR Redmond. The idea was to get Dr. Chandra's view on what has happened in white space networking since his best paper award at ACM SIGCOMM 2009. I find that the resulting article is very interesting. The amount of progress made in white space networking solutions, that has actually led to an operational deployment in Africa, is truly inspiring, and a clear testament to the amount of impact our community can have. I do sincerely hope that you will be as inspired as I was while reading it. This issue of CCR is also being published after ACM SIGCOMM in Hong Kong. SIGCOMM 2013 was marked with a number of records: 1) it has been the only SIGCOMM, I at least remember, hit by a natural disaster - typhoon Utor, 2), resulting in 2 entire sessions postponed to the afternoon (making it essentially dual track:), and 3) it has had the highest acceptance rate since 1987 - with 38 accepted papers.
    During their opening remarks the TPC chairs, Prof. Paul Barford, University of Wisconsin at Madison, and Prof. Srini Seshan, Carnegie Mellon University, presented the following two word clouds, which I found highly interesting. The first word cloud represents the most common words found in the titles of the submitted papers, and the second one the most common words in the titles of the accepted papers. Maybe they could form the input to a future editorial by someone in the community.
    As one can tell, Software Defined Networking (SDN) was one major topic in this year's conference. Interestingly, behavior, experience and privacy also appear boldly, confirming the belief of some of the community, that indeed SIGCOMM is broadening its reach, covering a diverse set of topics that the Interent is touching in today's society.
    This year's SIGCOMM also featured an experiment. All sessions were scribed in real time and notes were added in the blog at You can find a lot of additional information on the papers, and the questions asked on that site.
    Reaching the end of this note, I would like to welcome Prof. Sanjay Jha, from the University of New South Wales, in Sydney, Australia, to the editorial board. Prof. Jha brings expertise in a wide range of topics in networking, including wireless sensor networks, ad-hoc/community wireless networks, resilience and multicasting in IP networks and security protocols for wired/wireless networks. I hope you enjoy this issue, and its accompanying special issue on ACM SIGCOMM and the best papers of its associated workshops. I am always at your disposal in case of questions, suggestions, and comments.
  • Stefano Traverso, Mohamed Ahmed, Michele Garetto, Paolo Giaccone, Emilio Leonardi, Saverio Niccolini
    The dimensioning of caching systems represents a difficult task in the design of infrastructures for content distribution in the current Internet. This paper addresses the problem of defining a realistic arrival process for the content requests generated by users, due its critical importance for both analytical and simulative evaluations of the performance of caching systems. First, with the aid of YouTube traces collected inside operational residential networks, we identify the characteristics of real traffic that need to be considered or can be safely neglected in order to accurately predict the performance of a cache. Second, we propose a new parsimonious traffic model, named the Shot Noise Model (SNM), that enables users to natively capture the dynamics of content popularity, whilst still being sufficiently simple to be employed effectively for both analytical and scalable simulative studies of caching systems. Finally, our results show that the SNM presents a much better solution to account for the temporal locality observed in real traffic compared to existing approaches.
    Augustin Chaintreau
  • Jon Crowcroft, Markus Fidler, Klara Nahrstedt, Ralf Steinmetz
    Dagstuhl hosted a three-day seminar on the Future Internet on March 25-27, 2013. At the seminar, about 40 invited researchers from academia and industry discussed the promises, approaches, and open challenges of the Future Internet. This report gives a general overview of the presentations and outcomes of discussions of the seminar.
  • Nikolaos Chatzis, Georgios Smaragdakis, Anja Feldmann, Walter Willinger
    Internet eXchange Points (IXPs) are generally considered to be the successors of the four Network Access Points (NAPs) that were mandated as part of the decommissioning of the National Science Foundation Network (NSFNET) in 1994/95 to facilitate the transition from the NSFNET to the “public Internet” as we know it today. While this popular view does not tell the whole story behind the early beginnings of IXPs, what is true is that since around 1994, the number of operational IXPs worldwide has grown to more than 300 (as of May 20131), with the largest IXPs handling daily traffic volumes comparable to those carried by the largest Tier-1 ISPs. However, IXPs have never really attracted much attention from the networking research community. At first glance, this lack of interest seems understandable as IXPs have apparently little to do with current “hot” topic areas such as data centers and cloud services or Software Defined Networking (SDN) and mobile communication. However, we argue in this article that, in fact, IXPs are all about data centers and cloud services and even SDN and mobile communication and should be of great interest to networking researchers interested in understanding the current and future Internet ecosystem. To this end, we survey the existing but largely fragmented sources of publicly available information about IXPs to describe their basic technical and operational aspects and highlight the critical differences among the various IXPs in the different regions of the world, especially in Europe and North America. More importantly, we illustrate the important role that IXPs play in today’s Internet ecosystem and discuss how IXP-driven innovation in Europe is shaping and redefining the Internet marketplace, not only in Europe but increasingly so around the world.
  • Joseph D. Camp

    Ranveer Chandra is a Senior Researcher in the Mobility & Networking Research Group at Microsoft Research. His research is focused on mobile devices, with particular emphasis on wireless communications and energy efficiency. Ranveer is leading the white space networking project at Microsoft Research. He was invited to the FCC to present his work, and spectrum regulators from India, China, Brazil, Singapore and US (including the FCC chairman) have visited the Microsoft campus to see his deployment of the worlds first urban white space network. The following interview captures the essence of his work on white spaces by focusing on his work published in ACM SIGCOMM 2009, which received the Best Paper Award.

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