The Emergence of a Networking Primitive in Wireless Sensor Networks
Philip Levis, Eric Brewer, David Culler, David Gay, Samuel Madden, Neil Patel, Joe Polastre, Scott Shenker, Robert Szewczyk, and Alec Woo
Published in Communications of the ACM, Volume 51, Issue 7, July 2008.
The wireless sensor network community approached networking abstractions as an open question, allowing answers to emerge with time and experience. The Trickle algorithm has become a basic mechanism used in numerous protocols and systems. Trickle brings nodes to eventual consistency quickly and efficiently while remaining remarkably robust to variations in network density, topology, and dynamics. Instead of flooding a network with packets, Trickle uses a “polite gossip” policy to control send rates so each node hears just enough packets to stay consistent. This simple mechanism enables Trickle to scale to thousand-fold changes in network density, reach consistency in seconds, and require only a few bytes of state yet impose a maintenance cost of a few sends an hour. Originally designed for disseminating new code, experience has shown Trickle to have much broader applicability, including route maintenance and neighbor discovery. This paper provides an overview of the research challenges wireless sensor networks face, describes the Trickle algorithm, and outlines several ways it is used today.
Talk (1MB), Paper (4MB)
BibTeX entry
@inproceedings{cacm08levis, author = "Philip Levis and Eric Brewer and David Culler and David Gay and Samuel Madden and Neil Patel and Joe Polastre and Scott Shenker and Robert Szewczyk and Alec Woo", title = "{The Emergence of a Networking Primitive in Wireless Sensor Networks}", booktitle = "{Communications of the ACM, Volume 51, Issue 7}", year = {2008}, month = {July} }