For nearly fifty years, beginning with Kleinrock’s pioneering work on using queueing theory to model packet flows in communication networks, network modeling has adopted the packet as a primary abstraction for network modeling and analysis. In the 1990’s the notion of “flows” (generally associated with TCP connections) gained currency, and more recently “content” has become the central abstraction in the content-centric networking. In this talk, we trace how dominant networking abstractions reflect and define a research agenda. We conclude with a discussion of how SDN and the management capabilities it enables have created a new focus on autonomic management of the network, and its services, as a system, particularly for wireless networks. Lastly, we conclude this talk with some musings on research funding, and teaching and learning networking.
Jim Kurose is a Distinguished University Professor in the College of Information and Computer Sciences at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, where he has been on the faculty since receiving his PhD in computer science from Columbia University. He received a BA in physics from Wesleyan University. He has held a number of visiting scientist positions in the US and abroad, including the Sorbonne University, the University of Paris, INRIA and IBM Research. He is proud to have mentored and taught an amazing group of students, and to have received a number of awards for his research, teaching and service, including the IEEE Infocom Award, the ACM SIGCOMM Lifetime Achievement Award, the ACM Sigcomm Test of Time Award, and the IEEE Computer Society Taylor Booth Education Medal. With Keith Ross, he is the co-author of the best-selling textbook, Computer Networking: a Top Down Approach (Pearson), now in its 8th edition. He is a member of the National Academy of Engineering and a Fellow of the ACM and the IEEE.