Group Oriented Services

“Group oriented services” are becoming more and more important in areas where the best effort service is not sufficient but where hard service guarantees cannot or shall not be supported by the underlying networking technology. In these areas it seems attractive to look for mechanisms which are both co-operative and explorative: Explorative in the sense that the end systems estimate the available bandwidth by appropriate end-to-end mechanisms. Co-operative in the sense that the end systems co-ordinate their usage of the available network resources.

Of course, TCP is the “classic” approach of handling this challenge at the transport layer. However, the data streams of the corresponding applications often include several TCP streams. Thus, an application oriented co-ordination at a higher layer is required for reaching a co-operative and explorative behavior from an application point of view.

For many years, the work group Communication Systems has been active in research on various aspects of the area sketched here. In the recent past, basic research efforts on the integration of media servers played an important role. Currently, the area of command and control systems is in the centre of interest – with a focus on military environments.


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