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Information-centric networking could fix these internet problems

Alan Carlton | June 29, 2016
The internet of the future will have to support pervasive mobile connectivity and multicast video technology while keeping latency down. ICN makes those possible.

Extending such simple shortest path routing in the node ultimately allows for rich policy/constraint-based decisions without the need for expensive DPI elements by exchanging the constraint algorithm used for path computation-usually optimized for shortest path-with other constraints, such as latency or application policy.

Lastly, the simple forwarding operation can deliver HTTP responses, e.g., individual chunks of a video, to many clients via the native ICN multicast capability. This is achieved by taking the individual bit fields describing a unicast path to each client and combining them through a simply binary OR into a multicast bit field.

In a nutshell, ICN is an implicit multicast system that by default delivers all the performance benefits enjoyed by such an approach, which will be significant when such a system is operated at large scale. Intuitively, this performance gain grows linearly with the number of video clients involved in the system, delivering possibly orders of magnitude improvements over current systems.

Too good to be true? Standard SDN switches already allow for the aforementioned bit field operation at virtually constant memory costs, while virtualized path computation elements are common in such SDN environments. What is needed is the ingress/egress mapping for a backward-compatible support of IP services in such an ICN vision. This is a problem that is being solved in ongoing research efforts, and we may see these results make it into our 5G world.



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