CS 395T Topics in Network Protocol Design

Spring 2011   Unique No. 53725

Classroom:  PAI 3.14        Time:  Friday 2 - 4:45 p.m.

Instructor: Simon S. Lam   Email: lam at cs.utexas.edu 

Office: ACES 2.118          Hours: Wed 3 - 4:30 p.m.

Course description

This class covers topics on network protocol design that are just beyond the scope of a standard textbook on computer networksThe prerequisite for this class is Graduate Standing.  (Note that CS 386M is not a prerequisite for this class.)  If you have any question regarding this class, please contact me by email.

This class will be run as a seminar class.  The topics to be covered are the following:

The emphasis of this class is on network protocol design to address performance, correctness, and security issues.  The topics above are covered by papers in a reading list.  There are two types of papers in the list: (i) core papers (these are older papers that contain fundamental ideas and results), and (ii) recent papers (these are more recent publications selected because they address interesting new issues). 


Your letter grade for the class will be determined by a term paper (50%), reviews submitted (10%), class presentations (35%), and discussion participation (10%). (A term paper is not required for CR/NC grade.)

Term paper

Your term paper will be on an individual project.  You can choose any topic in network protocol design that is relevant to this class.  (However, please talk to me first and do so as soon as you can.)

Discussions with other students are strongly encouraged.  But each student must write his/her own term paper with his/her own ideas, results, words, and graphics.  Note that I will grade your paper on your ability to write, articulate ideas, and present arguments and results, as well as your paper formatting style - in addition to the quality of your work's intellectual contributions and results.


1. March 25, 2011, Friday - One-page choice-of-topic proposal due at the beginning of class.

The proposal should include a title, a concise description of the topic and idea(s) to be explored as well as your methodology, and a list of references. 

2. May 4, 2011, Wednesday - Submit a hard copy of your paper in my mailbox in CS department office (ACES 5.214) by 5 p.m.

Note that your paper should be written only for this class and not be used to satisfy the requirement of another class (past or present). As a rough guideline, the length of your paper should be 10 pages or longer.  It is your discretion to determine font size, single- or double-column format, etc. 

No laptop

Students are asked not to have laptops or other electronic devices open during class. 

Submission of your priority list of papers to present via email (due 2 p.m. Friday, 1/28/2011)