Internet Architecture Task Force workshop

Sat, 3 Oct 87 23:49:45 EDT


The Internet Architecture Task Force (INARC) studies technical issues in the
evolution of the Internet from its present architectural model to new models
appropriate for very large, very fast internets of the future. It is organized
as a recurring workshop where researchers, designers and implementors can
discuss novel ideas and experiences without limitation to the architecture and
engineering of the present Internet. The output of this effort represents
advance planning for a next-generation internet, as well as fresh insights
into the problems of the current one.

The INARC is planning a two-day retreat/workshop for 17-18 November at BBN to
discuss a fresh start on advanced internet concepts and issues. The agenda for
this meeting will be to explore architecture and engineering issues in the
design of a next-generation internet system. The format will consist of
invited presentations on selected topics followed by a general discussion on
related issues. Written contributions of suitable format and content will
be submitted for publication in the ACM Computer Communication Review.

In order to have the most stimulating discussion possible, the INARC is
expanding the list of invitees to include those researchers with agenda to
plow, axe to grind, sword to wield or any other useful instrument for that
matter. Contributors are invited to submit concise summaries of presentations
of from fifteen to forty minutes in electronic form to or in
hardcopy form to

Dr. David L. Mills
Electrical Engineering Department
University of Delaware
Newark, DE 19716
(302) 451-8247

Up to forty participants will be selected on the basis of quality, relevance
and interest. Following is a list of possible areas and issues of interest
to the community. Readers are invited to submit additions, deletions and

1. How should the next-generation internet be structured, as a network of
   internets, an internet of internets or both or neither? Do we need a
   hierarchy of internets? Can/must the present Internet become a component of
   this hierarchy?

2. What routing paradigms will be appropriate for the new internet? Will the
   use of thinly populated routing agents be preferred over pervasive routing
   data distribution? Can innovative object-oriented source routing mechanisms
   help in reducing the impact of huge, rapidly changing data bases?

3. Can we get a handle on the issues involved in policy-based routing? Can a
   set of standard route restrictions (socioecononic, technopolitic or
   bogonmetric) be developed at reasonable cost that fit an acceptable
   administrational framework (with help from the Autonomous Networks Task
   Force)? How can we rationalize these issues with network control and
   access-control issues?

4. How do we handle the expected profusion of routing data? Should it be
   hierarchical or flat? Should it be partitioned on the basis of use, service
   or administrative organization? Can it be made very dynamic, at least for
   some fraction of clients, to support mobile hosts? Can it be made very
   robust in the face of hackers, earthquakes and martians?

5. Should we make a new effort to erase intrinsic route-binding in the
   existing addressing mechanism of the Internet IP address and ISO NSAP
   address? Can we evolve extrinsic binding mechanisms that are fast enough,
   cheap enough and large enough to be useful on an internet basis?

6. Must constraints on the size and speed of the next-generation internet be
   imposed? What assumptions scale on the delay, bandwidth and cost of the
   network components (networks and gateways) and what assumptions do not?

7. What kind of techniques will be necessary to accellerate reliable transport
   service from present speeds in the low megabit range to speeds in the
   FDDI range (low hundreds of megabits)? Can present checksum, window and
   backward-correction (ARQ) schemes be evolved for this service, or should we
   shift emphasis to forward-correction (FEC) and streaming schemes.

8. What will the internet switch architecture be like? Where will the
   performance bottlenecks likely be? What constraints on physical, link
   and network-layer protocols will be advisable in order to support the
   fastest speeds? Is it possible to build a range of switches running
   from low-cost, low-performance to high-cost, high-performance?

9. What form should a comprehensive congestion-control mechanism take? Should
   it be based on explicit or implicit resource binding? Should it be global
   in scope? Should it operate on flows, volumes or some other traffic

10. Do we understand the technical issues involved with service-oriented
   routing, such as schedule-to-deadline, multiple access/multiple
   destination, delay/throughput reservation and resource binding? How can
   these issues be coupled with effective congestion-control mechanisms?

11. What will be the relative importance of delay-based versus flow-based
   service specifications to the client population? How will this affect the
   architecture and design? Can the design be made flexible enough to provide
   a range of services at acceptable cost? If so, can the internet operation
   setpoint be varied, automatically or manually, to adapt to different
   regimes quickly and with acceptable thrashing?

12. What should the next-generation internet header look like? Should it have
   a variable-length format or fixed-length format? How should options,
   fragmentation and lifetime be structured? Should source routing or
   encapsulation be an intrinsic or derived feature of the architecture?

13. What advice can we give to other task forces on the impact of the
   next-generation internet in their areas of study? What research agenda,
   if any, should we propose to the various NSF, DARPA and other agencies?
   What advice can we give these agencies on the importance, level of effort
   and probablity of success of the agenda to their current missions?

David L. Mills, Chairman INARC

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