next up previous contents
Next: Computer Design Up: Descriptions of Modules and Previous: Computer Architecture   Contents

Subsections

Computer Communications

Introduction

Historically, computing and telecommunications were viewed as distinct technical entities. Now, with the advent of cheap computers and sophisticated computer networks, the two have merged to yield the `information superhighway'. The course examines the fundamental techniques used to implement the sharing of information between computers, and applies them to all levels of communication, from the transmission of bits along physical connections to the distribution of computations over many processors.

Syllabus

Introduction and overview
information, time, space, protocols;
Information
sharing information in a distributed system;
Time
achieving synchronisation in a distributed system;
Space
achieving connectivity in a distributed system;
Message broadcast networks
characteristics, architectures, standards;
Message switching networks
characteristics, architectures, standards;
Inter-networks
characteristics, architectures, standards;
Case studies
perhaps two reasinably sized examples;
Real world issues
Internet, OSI, social implications, local experience.

Assessed Coursework

There is a piece of assessed coursework to implement components of an internationally standard connection-oriented protocol during the second half of the term; a set of short exercises in the first half of the term are used as a basis for this work. The coursework involves understanding a protocol specification, and then the design and implementation of software modules to complete a software system that simulates real-time communication with a trusted implementation over a channel with non-ideal properties.

The short exercises count for 20% of the overall coursework mark; they are promulgated at the beginning of week 3 of term, must be submitted at the beginning of week 5 of term, and are returned at the end of week 5 of term.

The main exercise counts for the remaining 80% of the overall coursework; it is promulgated at the beginning of week 6 of term, must be submitted by the end of term, and is returned at the beginning of the next term.


\begin{references}
\par\stars{2} Gordon Brebner \emph{Computers in Communication...
... Communications\/
{\rm (5th edition)}} Prentice Hall, 1997.
\par\end{references}


next up previous contents
Next: Computer Design Up: Descriptions of Modules and Previous: Computer Architecture   Contents
CS3 dummy user 2001-09-25