DataRing project addresses the problem of P2P data sharing for online
communities, by offering a high-level network ring across distributed
data source owners. Users may be in high numbers and interested
in different kinds of collaboration and sharing their knowledge, ideas,
experiences, etc. Data sources can be in high numbers, fairly
autonomous, i.e. locally owned and controlled, and highly heterogeneous
with different semantics and structures. What we need then is new
decentralized data management techniques that scale up while addressing
the autonomy, dynamic behavior and heterogeneity of both users and data
Online communities such as social networks (e.g.
sites like MySpace and Facebook) and professional communities (e.g.
research communities, online technical support groups) are becoming a
major killer application of the web. Community members typically have
common interests or purposes and are willing to share their data.
Through data sharing, online communities foster mass collaboration
whereby large numbers of members can contribute in parallel to a large
project, e.g. developing a world-wide encyclopedia such as Wikipedia.
To scale up to very large amounts of data while providing performance
and availability for ever growing numbers of users, they can rely on
parallel database techniques (e.g. using a cluster computer). However,
this solution is expensive (both in hardware/software and electricity),
requires skilled staff to administer, tune and repair the system and is
hard as it requires centralized integration of heterogeneous data.
Furthermore, community members may not trust the administrators of the
centralized servers and prefer to maintain their data in their computer
under their own control. Thus, radically new data sharing techniques
where the user plays a central role are needed. A promising solution is
to organize community members in a peer-to-peer (P2P) architecture
where each member can share data with the others through a P2P overlay
network. The major advantage of P2P is a completely decentralized
approach to data sharing which does not require centralized
The DataRing project (2009-2011) is sponsored by the french national
research agency ANR (Agence Nationale de la Recherche), within the
programme Future Networks and Services (VERSO).
Coordinator: Patrick Valduriez, INRIA, Nantes
Akbarinia, INRIA, Nantes