In today's Internet, TCP and the sockets interface form the de facto transport architecture. This architecture, however, is now showing signs of age, accelerated by
The needs of applications are no longer well-served by TCP. (1) TCP pays no heed to an application's performance or cost objectives, (2) it does not handle roaming, intermittent connectivity, multiple interfaces, and path choice, (3) its in-order byte stream model is a poor match for application-level objects, and (4) it does not allow an application to adapt promptly to changing network conditions.
To redress these shortcomings, we are developing ACT, a new transport architecture for the Internet. The cornerstones of ACT are application-specified objectives for data streams and the use of application-level framing. ACT takes application objectives into account in determining all decisions pertaining to end-to-end data transmission (congestion control & scheduling) and mobile network (and multi-homing) selection, as well as in-network queue management strategies. ACT has two main technical focus areas:
National Science Foundation and Wireless@MIT