This Future Internet Research Experiment will address an important emerging class of distributed applications for the Future Internet known as Real-Time Online Interactive Applications (ROIA). These include multi-player online computer games, advanced simulation-based e-Learning and training platforms, and other applications dependent upon synchronised bidirectional media distribution. These applications must process user inputs and generate responses in real time, so they are computationally intensive and typically cloud-hosted, and they place heavy demands on the network. The loads are also highly variable, depending on the popularity of an application (with the number and intensity of users changing rapidly when a new application is released), and also the behaviour of participants (which can change the way load is distributed across the application).
An earlier FP6 project (Edutain@Grid) showed that it is possible to use SLA-based management of cloud hosting across multiple data centres to scale and load balance applications dynamically and securely, while reducing start-up costs. However, the project also highlighted that although computational load and cost can be managed, network bottlenecks are introduced which limit the scalability and quality of experience.
OFERTIE aims to enhance and use the OFELIA Testbed for OpenFlow Programmable Networking to run experiments to establish how programmable networks can be used to support technical solutions such as multicast and managed QoS, and what business models and value chains would be able to use these solutions in an economically sustainable fashion.