Leading telecommunication operators, vendors, and research institutions collaborate in a strong, industry-led consortium to develop the Networks of the Future. A consortium of 25 operators, vendors and research institutions started on August 1st, 2010, the large EU-funded research project SAIL (Scalable & Adaptive Internet soLutions) aiming at designing architectures for the Networks of the Future, as part of the European Commission’s 7th Framework Program.
Today’s Internet rests on a foundation of technology, needs and visions that emerged 40 years ago. Since then, the purpose of Internet has changed profoundly. SAIL proposes to evolve the current network to better fit tomorrow’s needs. The general perspective taken in the project concerning the end-user is that applications and content that he/she is using from the network should follow him/her when moving, ensuring that will always be responsive no matter how far he/she is from home or the office.
SAIL will both design technologies for the Networks of the Future and develop techniques to transition from today’s networks to such future concepts. SAIL leverages state-of-the-art architectures and technologies, extends them as needed, and integrates them. SAIL uses experimentally-driven research, building prototypes that will proof the advantages in concrete use cases.
The project aims at designing technology that takes advantage of the fact that information and applications are mobile, and can be found in many places in the network. For this, end-users need to be able to address content directly, rather than addressing servers to get the closest copy, application providers need to be able to move applications and content around in the network quickly and automatically to fulfil the varying demand, and finally the network needs to adapt rapidly to connect applications and end-users, and take advantage of all available resources.
In order to address these exciting challenges, the work in SAIL is organised in four research areas:
- Migration, Standardisation, Business and Socio-Economics
- Network of Information
- Open Connectivity Services
- Cloud Networking
Multiple applications will take advantage of SAIL’s solutions. Mobility and social networking, like Facebook, have fundamentally changed the way we interact with others. New innovative applications are expected to bloom in a near future, resulting in a usage that no-one could ever predict 40 years ago.