My URSP project is developing a new routing protocol for mesh networks. It is a type of computer networks in which all nodes (computers, smartphones, etc) participate by forwarding data to other nodes. Additionally, such networks do not have a specific topology; any node can connect or disconnect from another node at any time, while all participants should collectively be able to figure out how to route information from node A to node B.
This technology is not common, but some cities in developed countries build their own community networks as a way to provide a superior Internet access to that offered by regular Internet Service Providers. Additionally, in developing countries, where infrastructure is uncommon, wireless mesh networks might be one of a few choices for building connectivity.
Some of the technical requirements for a mesh networking protocol are low communication latency and scalability: the protocol should support thousands of nodes without degrading performance for users.
I had the most important ideas before applying to URSP. My work throughout the semester is programming the protocol and simulating it. Additionally, my mentor, Dr. Mark, and I are currently preparing a conference paper.
On a weekly basis I read research papers, while in order to do the actual work I dedicate long periods of time without distracting on other tasks. Examples are the spring break, five days in January when the university was closed, some of the weekends.
In the future, I hope that this research will be incorporated in a real software that will allow building scale-free networks with zero configuration. I am going to release all software made for this project under open-source licenses.