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CAIDA-Sponsored Internet Teaching Labs to Open at 13 Universities

Router Shipment Signals Start of First Round of CAIDA Internet Teaching Laboratories

Published 04/17/2000

Theresa Ott, SDSC/CAIDA, 858-822-0956,
David Hart, SDSC, 858-534-8314,

SAN DIEGO, CA -- Thirteen universities across the country will soon implement Internet Teaching Laboratories (ITLs) on their campuses for use in their fall 2000 terms. The ITL project (, sponsored by the Cooperative Association for Internet Data Analysis (CAIDA), includes plans for hands-on teaching laboratories at 25 U.S. universities during the year 2000.

"The Internet Teaching Labs are a natural outgrowth of CAIDA's Internet Engineering Curriculum project that aims to improve curriculum resources as a step toward better preparing the next generation of network engineers and technology workers," said Aubrey Bush, Director of the Division of Advanced Networking Infrastructure and Research of the National Science Foundation (NSF). "We are particularly excited that CAIDA, through their successful collaborative relationships with the networking industry, has been able to establish this program to place modern networking equipment into university labs."

CAIDA is a collaborative effort to research and promote greater cooperation in designing and maintaining a robust, scalable Internet infrastructure. CAIDA provides a neutral framework within which industrial, academic, and government participants can meet in support of these goals.

Contributions of equipment, funding and people to the ITLs are being provided jointly by industry, government, and academia. Cisco Systems and Cable & Wireless are contributing routers and related equipment during Phase 1 of the ITL. MCI WorldCom is offering engineering talent to support the design and implementation of the facilities, and financial support for implementation, curriculum distribution, and training is being provided by NSF.

Phase 1 includes Cisco System's contribution of 96 Cisco 7000 routers, removed from backbone POPs, and roughly 200 CSU/DSU units from Cable & Wireless. The typical ITL configuration will include three routers fully populated with FDDI, T3 and T1 high-speed serial interfaces, a chassis of CSU/DSUs and related cables. The participating university will supply ancillary hosts and other equipment. As part of this collaborative undertaking, ITL universities will contribute classroom curriculum and lab exercises to the project and assist in helping new ITL facilities during their start-up. We envision that relationships between universities and local commercial computing and networking companies will be strengthened as the existence of the ITLs and well-trained students become evident. Phase II of the ITL will begin late this year and will include participation by additional vendors, Internet providers and universities.

The ITL program is an extension of the San Diego Supercomputer Center's CAIDA Internet Engineering Curriculum (IEC) project that includes a repository for teaching materials from University courses, vendor training materials, and tutorials. Funded by NSF and participating CAIDA members, the IEC provides a dynamic source of current, relevant resources for use by university faculty and others in designing or updating networking courses. The IEC periodically offers training programs for faculty, covering a variety of topics typically included in undergraduate or beginning graduate classes in networking. The coverage is deep and focused - topics include TCP dynamics, the NS network simulator, multicast, web analysis, and traffic analysis.

"Education in any engineering discipline invariably includes significant lab work, but few Internet engineering courses include a realistic hands-on laboratory component, largely due to a lack of equipment," said kc claffy, CAIDA's Principal Investigator. "Industry participants are stepping forward with generous commitments of equipment, software and their time to make the creation of the ITLs possible. We hope that helping to foster the development and evolution of Internet teaching laboratories will have a major impact on undergraduate education in computer science and networking."

"Universities and industry need to join forces to accomplish our common goals of developing the next generation of Internet professionals and ensuring the adequacy of Internet engineering instructional resources," said Bob Aiken, Manager of Cisco Systems Inc. University Research Program. "In addition to direct support of CAIDA's IEC and ITL initiatives, Cisco's commitment to support university efforts is demonstrated through its University Research Program, Networking Academy, and on-going support of university-based organizations such as Internet2 and CAIDA."

"As a major global provider for Internet and telecommunications services, Cable & Wireless knows that improving the quality of the emerging Internet workforce is both vital to our future and to that of the continued development of our industry. Cable & Wireless is pleased to be a partner in this important undertaking and look forward to working with CAIDA and the ITL universities in the years to come," said Jeff Young, vice president of Engineering, Cable & Wireless.

The first round, Phase 1 recipients of Internet Teaching Laboratories are:

  • The University of California, San Diego;
  • Grand Valley State University (Allendale, Michigan);
  • Humboldt State University (Arcata, California);
  • Kent State University (Kent, Ohio);
  • North Carolina State University (Raleigh, North Carolina);
  • Syracuse University (Syracuse, New York);
  • The University of Alabama, Birmingham;
  • The University of California, Los Angeles;
  • The University of New Hampshire (Durham, New Hampshire);
  • The University of Southern California (Los Angeles, California);
  • The University of Texas, Austin;
  • Ohio University (Athens, Ohio); and
  • Florida State University (Tallahassee, Florida).

Competition for Round 2 of Phase 1 is currently underway and will result in ITL awards to approximately 12 more U.S. universities. See to apply. Proposals are being evaluated by the IEC Advisory board made up of university and industry leaders. The advisory board members are: Robert Aiken, Cisco; Steve Bellovin, ATT Research; Scott Bradner, Harvard University; Randy Bush, Verio; John Connolly, University of Kentucky; Jon Crowcroft, University College London; Jim Kurose, University of Massachusetts; and Rick Wilder, Broadband Office.

Participating universities will contribute to the advancement of Internet engineering knowledge through on-site research and classroom exercises, sharing of their lab exercises and curriculum materials via the IEC web page, collaborative relationships with industry, and making their ITL facilities available to other colleges and universities.

"The ITL will be fully integrated into IEC activities," said Evi Nemeth, co-principal investigator on the IEC project. "In particular, the ITLs will be extensively involved in IEC workshops, which will make use of the laboratories' equipment." ITL universities will also be encouraged to participate in all IEC activities (, including integrating IEC studies and materials into their own Internet lab courses.

CAIDA is a program of the San Diego Supercomputer Center (SDSC), an organized research unit of the University of California, San Diego. In addition to sponsoring the Internet Teaching Laboratories and the Internet Engineering Curriculum Repository, CAIDA creates measurement and traffic analysis tools for use by Internet engineers and visualization technologies to complement these tools and increase understanding of network topology. For more information on CAIDA, see For more information on SDSC, see

MCI WorldCom is a global leader in "all distance" communications services, with operations in more than 65 countries. Revenues in 1999 were $37 billion, with more than $15 billion from high-growth data, Internet and international services, see

With customers in 70 countries, Cable & Wireless (NYSE: CWP) is a major global telecommunications business with revenue of around $13 billion in the year ended March 1999 and over 50,000 employees. It offers a range of services spanning broadband data and Internet services, fixed and mobile voice, as well as interactive entertainment and information. Cable & Wireless' priority for expansion is the fast growing market of data and IP (Internet Protocol) services for business customers see