An Architecture for Geographically-Oriented Service Discovery on the Internet
Most of the service discovery protocols available on the Internet are built upon its logical structure. This phenomenon can be observed frequently from the way in which they behave. For instance, Jini and SLP service providers announce their presence by multicasting service advertisements, an approach that is neither intended to scale nor capable of scaling to the size of the Internet. With mobile and wireless devices becoming increasingly popular, there appears to be a need for performing service discovery in a wide-area context, as there is very little direct correlation between the Internet topology and geographic locations. Even for desktop computers, such a need can arise from time to time. This problem suggests the necessity for an architecture that allows users to locate resources on the Internet using geographic criteria. This thesis presents an architecture that can be deployed with minimal effort in the existing network infrastructure. The geographic information can be shared among multiple applications in a fashion similar to the way DNS is shared throughout the Internet. The design and implementation of the architecture are discussed in detail, and three case studies are used to illustrate how the architecture can be employed by various applications to satisfy dramatically different needs of end-users.