How will the Internet of the future look like? Which forms of communications – as we know them today – will prevail, which novel forms of communications will emerge? What are the challenges faced regarding the constantly increasing mobile use of networks? To summarize: A grand challenge in communication systems stems from an increase in dynamics and variations of the conditions in which they operate, the constantly increasing amount of changes of use cases, and the growing quality requirements.
The Collaborative Research Centre MAKI (Multi-Mechanism-Adaptation for the Future Internet) addresses this challenge. In particular, it investigates all kinds of mechanisms in communication systems, the adaptation, inter-action, constant optimization, and evolution thereof. The term mechanism describes both, communication protocols and parts thereof – defining the functionality of communication systems – and the functional aspects of the distributed systems realized on top. We witness a constant development of novel mechanisms. Yet, mechanisms providing equivalent functionality under different conditions coexist, since an adaptation of legacy mechanisms to traffic conditions, bandwidth, etc. is limited. Particularly mobile usage induces highly fluctuating conditions, which would require the online adaptation of the communication system by means of transitions between functionally equivalent mechanisms – which is mostly impossible as of today. Interactions between mechanisms that jointly depend on each other are more complex still and require coordinated transitions in groups of equivalent mechanisms, so-called multi-mechanisms-adaptation.
Goal of the CRC is to enable such automated transitions between functionally equivalent mechanisms in communication systems at runtime. It includes the coordination of multiple concurrent transitions, which influence each other. We face this challenge in the context of the international research efforts towards a “future Internet”. We consider the plentiful coexistence of mechanisms a great opportunity rather than a curse, stimulating innovation. However, significant advances in research are required to enable individually as well as jointly coordinated (multi-) transitions between mechanisms at system runtime. We aim at a paradigm shift in the global Internet research. We believe that a targeted effort of the given CRC-scale size is required to deal with the ever increasing complexity, variability, and dynamics of the Internet that coincide with a deluge of novel applications and constantly increasing quality requirements.
The second funding period lasted from 01.01.2017 – 31.12.2020.
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