8:05 a.m., April 7, 2010----Paul Amer, Alumni Distinguished Professor in the Department of Computer and Information Sciences at the University of Delaware, has received an award of $50,000 from Google for research on protocols that speed up surfing the Web.
As part of its "Let's Make the Web Faster" initiative, Google is experimenting with alternative protocols to help reduce the latency when downloading Web pages.
One of these experiments is SPDY (pronounced "SPeeDY"), an application-layer protocol for transporting content over the Web designed specifically for reducing latency when using Chrome, Google's browser that competes with Internet Explorer and Firefox.
For the past decade, Amer and his students in UD's Protocol Engineering Laboratory have been developing the Stream Control Transmission Protocol (SCTP). SCTP is an innovative transport protocol, existing at an equivalent level as UDP (User Datagram Protocol) and TCP (Transmission Control Protocol), which currently provide transport layer functions to all of today's Internet applications.
As with TCP, SCTP provides a reliable transport service, ensuring that data is delivered from to the receiver without error and in the same sequence as transmitted. Also as with TCP, SCTP is a connection-oriented mechanism, meaning that a relationship is created between the endpoints of an SCTP session prior to data being transmitted and this relationship is maintained until all data transmission has been successfully completed.
Unlike TCP, SCTP provides a number of functions that are considered critical for signaling transport, and which at the same time can provide transport benefits to other applications requiring additional performance and reliability. Two core innovative services of SCTP are multistreaming and multihoming.
Amer will collaborate with Google researchers by investigating the performance of Chrome-SPDY over SCTP, and comparing results with Google's experiments using Chrome-SPDY over TCP. The goal is to demonstrate that features of SCTP that are unavailable in TCP can further improve Chrome-SPDY's latency gains and/or fault tolerance.
Amer indicated he is excited to begin this new research collaboration with Google, saying, “Google's Faculty Research Award program is a wonderful means for one of the world's leading computing companies to partner with academic institutions.”
A Google Web page says of its Faculty Research Award Program, “We are committed to develop new technologies to help our users find and use information. While we do significant in-house research and engineering, we also maintain strong ties with academic institutions worldwide pursuing innovative research in core areas relevant to our mission. As part of that vision, the Google Research Awards program aims to identify and support world-class, full-time faculty pursuing research in areas of mutual interest.”