I have a Professorial Chair in the School of Engineering at the University of Aberdeen, (UoA), Scotland's third oldest University and the fifth oldest in the UK.
I participate in the teaching activities of the School of Engineering, delivering taught courses on communications engineering laboratory activities and undergraduate and postgraduate project supervision (see some links at the bottom of this page).
I conduct my research in Internet Engineering within the Electronics Research Group (a part of the School's EEE research group). I am the named author of more than 100 published papers.
My current research interests focus on :
Internet Engineering and Internet Transport
I once implemented IP in the XNet simulation environment, using the classic object oriented programming language, SIMULA, to explore protocol interactions at multiple layers. I have since developed a variety of transport protocol mechanisms and investigated IP Diffserv.
I am a former working group chair for the Datagram Congestion Control Protocol (DCCP) WG, a transport designed for multimedia transport that prefers timeliness over the need for reliability offered by TCP, I was a co-author of the UDP-Lite specification and QuickStart. I continue to research use of Explicit Congestion Notification (ECN). ERG has been a significant contributor to the DCCP and UDP-Lite Linux stacks, and continues to work on practical implementation of protocols and contribute code to the open source community for these transports.
I completed a range of projects working with IP multicast transport, multicast routing and group membership protocols, and includes practical experience in deployment of IP multicast. I have been an invited speaker at commercial and research meetings on TCP/IP performance and broadband networking, including workshops with the UK accademic community (JANET).
TCP/IP Networking over Satellite
I have worked with packet protocols over satellite since 1985 and on the first IP-based European satellite system (analysing and developing IP router benchmarking software for the European Space Agency's CODE VSAT). I was a part of a team that pioneered IP over Digital Video Broadcast (DVB) and that organised the first IPv6 over DVB demonstration to the European Commission. Since 2004, my research group has been a member of the prestigious European Satellite Network of Excellence (SatNEx), which brings together leading European research establishments in satellite communications.
ERG's practical work is supported by a small lab on the roof of the Fraser Noble Building with a number of two-way satellite terminals including a very early prototype Ka-Band terminal, and a selection of DVB-based satellite receivers.
I was a member of the Broadband Satellite Multimedia (BSM) WG of ETSI (TC-SES) until 2010, where I contributed to specifications for IP-based satellite systems. I participated on behalf of ESA in TM-RCS, defining IP functions for the Higher Layers (satellite) specification for DVB-RCS2. I chaired the IETF IPDVB working group, developing the ULE encapsulation protocols and within DVB worked on the GSE link specification.
For many years I delivered professional lectures at the University of York on communications protocols for small terminal satellite communications as a part of their residential course. I now form a part of the team delivering the annual IET professional course on Satellite Communications Course at Savoy Place, London.
I an active participant in the specification and engineering of internet standards and a member of the Internet Society (ISOC). In the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF), I chair the Transport Area working group (TSVWG) and have (co)authored 25 RFCs with over 150 citations within the RFC-series.
I have (and do) actively contributed to and follow various IETF Working Groups, including:
I curently also participate in the IRTF PAN RG, MAP RG and ICC RG.
Internet Drafts are available from the IETF
For a while I used a 128K Mac, and later developed a long-lasting and very personal relationship with the Apple Macintosh. I also have a soft spot for the PDP-8, particularly the 8F, which was an early RISC processor (!!!) and had a real front panel where you see into it's little world. I like steam railways (but couldn't tell you a single locomotive number... There's a difference between railways and train spotting!). I like eating cheese fondu, and quite a few other things.
My research has always favoured a blend of simulation and practical investigation. My first research project concerned simulation of packet satellite links in the early days of X.25, while exploring actual performance using X-band satellite systems. There was still much to be defined, and packet congestion was hardly understood. I worked for years (!) on my own implementation of X.25 and added many features to the link protocols to improve performance over a satellite link, including the HDLC Multi-SREJ protocol. For a while, I worked on a number of projects relating to IP/ATM, before moving focus to TCP/IP and Internet Engineering.
Details of Lecture Slides and Information
IP over DVB Mailing List (IETF)
Where I am.Another list of projects and publications