Paper review: <
Congestion Avoidance and Control [Jac88]
Reviewer: <Ryan Gehl>
- State the problem the paper is trying to solve.
This paper focuses on the problem of network congestion.
- State the main contribution of the paper: solving a new problem,
proposing a new algorithm, or presenting a new evaluation (analysis). If a
new problem, why was the problem important? Is the problem still
important today? Will the problem be important tomorrow? If a new
algorithm or new evaluation (analysis), what are the improvements over
previous algorithms or evaluations? How do they come up with the new
algorithm or evaluation?
The main contribution of this paper is to propose several new algorithms
to deal with avoiding and controlling network congestion. Specifically,
the authors attempt to solve problems present in various implementations
of TCP. By examining the October 1986 "Internet Collapse", the authors
found that the flow on a TCP connection should obey the "conservation of
packets" principle, and have created five algorithms based on this
- Summarize the (at most) 3 key main ideas (each in 1
(1) The flow on a TCP connection should obey the 'conservation of
packets' principle, meaning that a new packet isn't put into the network
until an old packet leaves.
(2) The slow-start and congestion avoidance algorithms are different
algorithms with different objectives, but in practice they should be
- Critique the main contribution
- Rate the significance of the paper on a scale of 5
(breakthrough), 4 (significant contribution), 3 (modest contribution), 2
(incremental contribution), 1 (no contribution or negative contribution).
Explain your rating in a sentence or two.
I would give this paper a 5 because it seems to be a breakthrough in which
the authors really probe into the question of why networks get congested
(conservation of packets) and propose several viable algorithms to remedy
- Rate how convincing the methodology is: how do the authors
justify the solution approach or evaluation? Do the authors use arguments,
analyses, experiments, simulations, or a combination of them? Do the
claims and conclusions follow from the arguments, analyses or experiments?
Are the assumptions realistic (at the time of the research)? Are the
assumptions still valid today? Are the experiments well designed? Are
there different experiments that would be more convincing? Are there other
alternatives the authors should have considered? (And, of course, is the
paper free of methodological errors.)
By studying a previous network failure and (then) current TCP
implementations, I felt that the authors presented a very thorough and
- What is the most important limitation of the approach?
I thought this was a solid paper.
- What lessons should researchers and builders take away from this
work. What (if any) questions does this work leave open?
By examining a failure, it is often possible to learn from the
mistakes made in previous implementations of protocols.