Son Vuong

Associate Professor Emeritus
Email: vuong [at] cs [dot] ubc [dot] ca
Office: ICCS 189
Phone: 604-827-3133

Distributed Systems Research Group and the IWIN Project - Internetworking WIreless Networks for Mobile Computing.

Curriculum Vitae

B.Sc., Calif. State Univ. (1972); M.Eng., Carleton University (1977); Ph.D., University of Waterloo (1982); System Analyst, Canada Center for Remote Sensing (1975-79); Post Grad Internship, BNR Research (1979); Lecturer/Assistant Professor, University of Waterloo (1980-82); Assistant Professor, University of British Columbia (1983-92); Associate Professor, University of British Columbia (1992-).


Distributed Systems
systems architecture
high-speed networks
mobile intelligent agents
multimedia communications
wireless communications
protocol engineering


For the past twenty years, my main research interest has been in the area of protocol engineering, focussing on formal techniques and tools for the design, validation, implementation and testing of communication protocols. We have implemented a number of useful tools for protocol engineering, that have been distributed worldwidely: VALIRA, VALISYN, Estelle-C compiler, TESTGEN+, and TESTCOVTools. In recent years, my research activities have focussed on the design, specification, implementation and testing of modern protocols for advanced (next-generation Internet) networks, multimedia communications, mobile and pervasive computing, and E-commerce. I am particularly interested in the protocol engineering issues of security protocols for E-commerce, multimedia and hypermedia synchronization, design and analysis of networked household of the future ("smart homes"), and particularly WAVE, a very novel language, system and paradigm of coordination and control of large open distributed systems. Wave permits dynamic creation of flexible and powerful mobile intelligent agents and control structures that may evolve with the systems supervised. Recursive code written in this language is dynamically self-spreading in a network system space (like a virus) in a parallel and cooperative mode governing the overall system behaviour. Wave paradigm and technology are so novel and powerful that it can be viewed as the network language of the future and can be applied to many networks problems and applications, including Web search, periodic automatic search and elimination of virus, intelligent management of mobile and dynamic networks, active networks, distributed coordination of multiple objects in space, and integration of distributed databases for e-commerce applications.

Of the major research projects we have engaged in, the most significant is the recently proposed Network of Centres of Excellence, so-called GISST (Global Information Systems and Software Technology) co-led by myself and Prof. David Parnas from McMaster University. GISST is a $ 30-million proposal for 7 years and it involves over 120 researchers from 24 major universities across Canada. GISST focusses on strategic, novel research on the next-generation Internet network and applications, and software quality assurance. GISST also involves several industrial partners, that are large companies and SMEs in networks and software industry as well as government organizations in Canada, including Nortel Networks, IBM Canada, Telus, Bell Canada, Mitel, CISCO, Microsoft, Roger Communications, Infranet Solutions, NRC, CRC, BC ASI, etc. Other past research projects include: the joint IOR NSERC research grant with Motorola/ARRC on Internetworking WIreless Networks (IWIN) for mobile computing (with colleagues Victor Leung from UBC/ECE, Norm Hutchinson from UBC/CS , and Steve Harfy from SFU), the CITR/NCE project on communications software engineering (with Sam Chanson), the joint IDACOM/UBC/NSERC on OSI protocol testing (with Mabo Ito and Sam Chanson), and an NSERC Strategic grant on low-cost local communications via electric power lines (with Bob Donaldson from UBC/ECE).

Selected Publications

Zhu, JS, Toeroe, M., Leung, V., and Vuong, S. "Supporting Universal Personal Computing on Internet with Java and CORBA," April, 1999 Concurrency: Practice and Experience, 1999

Vuong, X. T. and Vuong, S. T. "Satellite Link Margin and Availability Issues", IEEE Trans. on Broadcasting, (June 1997).

Vuong, S., Cooper, K., and Ito, M., "Petri Net Models for Describing Multimedia Synchronization Requirements'', ICNP '95 - The Third IEEE International Conference on Network Protocols, pp. 260-267, Tokyo, Japan, (November 1995).

Vuong, S.T., Loureiro, A. and Chanson, S.T., "Design for Testability of Communication Protocols - A Framework and Perspectives'', Electronic Journal on Network and Distributed Computing (EJNDP), No. 2, pp. 95-119, (September 1995).

a place of mind, The University of British Columbia


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