CS-739: Peer-to-peer Distributed Systems
University of Wisconsin, Madison
Department of Computer Sciences
MWF at 1:00-2:15pm (will probably meet two out of three per week)
130 Psychology (note change)
TBA and by appointment
Welcome to the distributed systems class! This semester we're going to focus the class around the emergence of
We will cover new and exciting research in the field, as well as the old tried and true fundamentals of distributed systems. Is P2P here to stay, or is it the latest fad? Stay tuned and find out.
The class will require you to
do a final project.
You will also be expected to
present a paper to the class
once or twice, as well as
in discussion. The basic idea is to read, discuss, and learn about the amazing explosion of P2P research that is going on as we speak. Then, once we all have a handle on current research, you will apply what you have learned and churn out a set of terrific final projects.
The schedule will be broken down into three major portions of the course. In the first, we will cover some recent technical papers from major conferences. The schedule for those papers is listed below. In the second, we will read short position papers from
a workshop on P2P systems. In the third part of the course, we will go back and cover the fundamental technologies underlying distributed systems.
is available here.
All of the readings are available on-line. Note that you shouldn't read too far ahead, as the list may change during the semester.
Read the assigned papers before class.
Without doing so, discussion is a little more difficult.
If you want,
form a discussion group.
Discussion groups are useful in developing the ability to critically evaluate research, but are not mandatory in this course.
The final project is the main focus of the course. You are expected to perform work which could eventually be suitable for publication in a major operating systems conference. In general, people should work in groups of size one or two, although if there is a massive project suitable for three people, I may be willing to consider it. We will provide some suggestions for you to pick from, although you are encouraged to think of a project on your own, which we can help to refine. Project write-ups will be similar in format to a conference submission, and all will be entered into a class-wide mini-conference. The best papers will receive some kind of recognition. More details are forthcoming.
Here are links to some previous class projects in CS 736:
There will be no exams. Hurray!
Grading will be based upon your project (largely) and your in-class presentation (somewhat). Participation will also be factored into the final equation.
The mailing list is
I will use it for general postings. A log of email is available at
Complaints, pithy comments, and general nuggets of wisdom should be sent to