EECS221/NETSYS270: Advanced Topics in Networking, Spring 2017


Instructor: Athina Markopoulou
Lectures: Mon, Wed, 9:30-10:50am, MSTB120
Textbook: Please see the Reading List for recommended books and papers.
Office Hours: Mon 11:15-12:30am in EH 4207 (or by appt)
Prerequisites: Familiarity with computer networks at graduate level.

Course Description

This course is intended for PhD or advanced MS students, who are interested in doing research in networking, especially in Network Science with applications to Computer/Mobile/Social Networks.

One goal of the course is to expose the graduate students to selected advanced topics in networking, including basic concepts in network science and their applications to real-world (computer, mobile and social) networks. In particular, we will cover the following topics:

Network Science:

  • Random networks
  • Power-laws and scale-free networks
  • Growth and preferential attachment
  • Degree correlation
  • Centrality
  • Community Detection

Selected Applications:

  • Real networks: Internet topologies, social networks
  • Ordering search results: PageRank
  • Influencing people in social networks
  • Navigating a small world: six-degrees of separation
  • Privacy: de-anonymization of network data, privacy leaks from mobile devices
  • Anomaly detection in network traffic

The second goal is to train the students in carrying out research: being able to identify a problem and carry out research in a timely manner; reviewing related literature and reading paper in a critical way; communicating the output of your research through presentations and technical papers. In this course, students will get familiar with this process (i) by presenting, discussing and reviewing papers in the aforementioned areas and (ii) by doing one research project that will lead to a workshop-quality paper.

Deliverables and Grading

Category What Grade % When
In class Paper Presentations 20% every 1-2weeks
Class Participation 10% always
Quizzes+Homeworks 20% every 2 weeks
Project Project Presentation 30 % 6/7/17 in class
Project Writeup 20 % 6/14/17 by noon

Detailed information:

  • In class: In every class meeting, we will have typically one main paper assigned, maybe two if we want to contrast them; and a few related (optional) ones. You will be expected to come to class having already read the main paper. One student will present and critic the paper for 10-15 minutes. The rest of the students are expected to participate in the discussion. Occasionally there will be an in-class quiz on the paper of the day; occasionally the quiz will be allowed to be completed home (as a homework). This process will take approximately half of the time. The remaining will be a standard lecture by the instructor.
  • Projects: The main deliverable in this course will be a research project, equivalent to a workshop paper. The instructor will propose a list of projects but you can also suggest your own. You are supposed to complete your project in groups of two. You will present your results in the last week of classes, and you will submit your writeup during final week. Ideally, your paper should be of publishable quality, in which case, I will help you submit it and will sponsor your expenses for presenting it in a conference. Project milestones:
When What To Do about the Project
Immediately form your team, browse papers, talk to instructor, define your project
4/26/17 Project proposal (5min) presented in class + Proposal (ppt) due
6/7/17 Final project presentation in class
6/14/17 Final project report (workshop paper format - 6pp)
throughout talk to your instructor for feedback