These are network applications that are meant to illustrate needs that the infrastructure that we are planning should support.
Large file transfers
Demand arrises instantaneously, usually unforeseen, occasionally periodic, latency irrelevant. A high definition movie is perhaps 1012 bits.
Video conference
Moderately high bandwidth, low latency, variable bandwidth.
Medium bandwidth, often half duplex.
Earthquake warning
Very low Latency, exceedingly low bandwidth.
Shell interaction
Low latency, low bandwidth
Web browsing
Medium bandwidth with high variability, fairly low latency.
Low bandwidth, high latency, bursty.
I divide these cases into two categories:
  1. The first three cases may well warrant the heavy duty preparations described here, possibly even involving futures or options.
  2. The last four clearly do not except that some current http traffic or large e-mail attachments can be fairly hefty.

A video conference I was recently in could have benefitted from separate video and audio circuits with different quality. Occasional video dropouts do not hurt, but audio dropouts do. We had to turn off the video in order to hear the voice.

The best way to think about theses two traffic classes is the difference of a consumer buying futures and buying on the spot market. Airlines buy fuel futures, I buy gas on the spot market. The futures I speak of here may not be suitable for all of the first three categories but do not presume that a person must be involved with each futures contract. There are many variations on futures such as options. This is developed here is a different framework.

A node may be aware of an option for bandwidth, probably accompanied by rented packet buffers. It can sell unclaimed capacity, proceeds going to the node operator or the options holder where the node operator holds the capacity on consignment. Not much code is needed in the node to provide all this. The node reads the contract in machine form; it does not make it. Large file transfers are special in that they may well be able to tolerate a bidding situation where they yield for most or all traffic in the second category.

Content delivery organizations such as Akamai would be ideal additions to DSR and might even form an important bridge to Internet.