A Fireside Chat about Internet Measurement, facilitated by M-Lab

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Session Description

  • We are open to, and enthusiastic about, sharing this session with other measurement projects or interested parties. Please let us know if you see an opportunity for us to co-facilitate with another group. I will reach out to a contact at RIPE to find out if they plan to attend IFF.* Measurement Lab (M-Lab) is a global, open source, open data platform for measuring end-to-end Internet experience. Researchers have contributed tests to the platform that measure upload and download speed, mobile performance, and hidden manipulation of web pages. In the past year, M-Lab has expanded its data exploration capabilities with the goal of making it easier for both regular people, researchers, journalists, and regulators to browse the data for interesting trends. In this session, we will facilitate a discussion of Internet measurement. This guided discussion will cover the What and the Who of Internet measurement, with a bit of the How if time allows. The What: What is network measurement and what are some ways of performing it? What measurement tools exist? What kinds of information can Internet measurement expose? To what extent can we discover whether world events correlate with network events? Do network changes correlate with business decisions by Internet providers or with policy changes enacted by governments? The Who: How do different communities engage with measurement data? Journalists? Researchers? Policy-makers and regulators? Users? What do people want to measure? What do we suspect they would find? What are the needs of the Internet freedom community, and how should we prioritize making network datasets more accessible? Please bring questions, suggestions, and ideas for this open discussion. "Fireside" isn't intended literally...though I'd be up for gathering near a fire pit!
A Fireside Chat about Internet Measurement, facilitated by M-Lab
Presenter/s Steph Alarcón (and friends??)
Organization
Bio/s Steph Alarcon is a Senior M-Lab Technologist at the Open Technology Institute (OTI) based in Washington, DC, helping to build a measurement framework for the Internet. As the global network has grown from a curiosity to a near-ubiquitous presence, so has the need to understand its power, its inequities, and its unknowns. Steph stumbled into the tech world just before the Dot Com boom and became fascinated with Open Source almost immediately. While working as a systems administrator, she spent her free time with community radio advocates, media activists, and makers/hackers/DIYers of many stripes. With one foot in the server room and the other in grassroots organizing, she learned how to critique tech culture and has strong interests in diversity and environmental sustainability in tech.
Language English (I'm decent in Spanish, so can listen to questions in Spanish, translate, and answer in both..more or less!)
Topics

Session Comments

What is being measured?

  1. Speed
  2. How does mobile perform?
  3. Mysterious Routing Decisions and Interconnection
  4. ISP Performance
  5. Manipulation in the header
  6. throttling
  7. explicit blocking
  8. diverse user experience


What do we want to know?

  1. What's the hardware that is being used?
  2. What are the technical capabilities?
  3. Where does censorship happen?
  4. Am I getting my money's worth from my ISP?
  5. Why does my Internet suck?


What do we use to measure?

  1. Ping (e.g. Unix Tool)
  2. Web-based Speed tests like http://www.speedtest.net
  3. RIPE Atlas Probe
  4. traceroute
  5. MTR


MLab: http://www.measurementlab.net