June 22, 2008
June 22, 2008
June 25, 2008
13.295.1 - 13.295.14
Classroom Experience of Peer-to-Peer Network Technology as Next Generation Television Abstract
One of the more challenging aspects of undergraduate Electrical and Computer Engineering Technology program is to bring the state-of-the-art technology experience into classroom. For many students, the traditional lecture/exam format is not effective at instilling the key concepts such that students truly understand. In the Digital Communication course during 2007, a new technology application class project called Joost “Bring TV to the Web” was introduced and received positive student responses. This paper describes the details of the class project information that can be integrated into any Networking or Telecommunications courses. The first part of the paper will introduce the ideas and business models behind Joost. It will discuss what makes Joost different and its advantages and potential disadvantages over its rival technologies. Then it will address the new P2P network technologies discussed in the class used by Joost and other important technologies implemented like H.264 for encoding and decoding and X.509 for encryption. The second part of this paper will focus on classroom experiment of the peer-to-peer network technology as a TV. As a result, students (1) will learn how to install and setup Joost application as a TV; (2) will observe bandwidth requirements, type of protocols used and the quality of the signal; (3) will learn how to use two open source software applications, Ethereal and Netpeeker, to measure the bandwidth of the signals; (4) will learn a new testing procedure. Results of Ethereal based experiment to document the protocol traffic and Netpeeker based experiment to get the maximum upload and maximum download rates are also tabulated in the paper. Finally student feedback and conclusion are provided.
It wasn’t long ago that TV networks started streaming selected series on their own sites. TV episodes are spreading not only to well-known portals such as AOL and Yahoo, but also to new destinations that mix in video searching, TV listings, and social networking. USA Today January 22, 2008 article on “More than just TV on the Web” reported that there are many video-rich web sites launched everyday, like Fancast.com, Hulu.com, Joost.com, Veoh.com, MeeVee.com, and MySpace.com/primetime. Some of the most notable competitors include YouTube and Apple’s iTunes which uses solutions and infrastructure from Akamai. Also, many broadcasters such as Fox have streaming content right from their websites. Movies will soon be streamed from websites such as Netflix. Each uses a slightly different approach; each has a different business model. Most do use a similar architecture to stream video by means of unicasting or multicasting. This technique is generally efficient, but can tax content servers as more and more people request content. From a technology point of view, Joost takes a different approach to providing the video content using its P2P technology.
The main concern that led us to develop the new class project was constant difficulties that students were experiencing during the Networking and Communications course of loading and installing different software tools to test the quality of the signal. Even some of the step-by-step procedures proved to be cumbersome and time consuming to implement for many students. Furthermore, the examples included in most existing software toolkits often provide no insight as to what is happening and how each node is contributing to the overall execution of an application, where the bottlenecks are, and how system constraints and modifications can impact the performance. Considering all these shortcomings, although there are no data comparing the performance of Joost and other existing software toolkits, we believe, for the purpose of teaching,
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