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WWW Browsing over a Wireless Link

Given the predominance of the WWW traffic in the Internet, and Industry Canada's vision that mobile devices will constitute the "on-ramp" to the national information infrastructure, special attention should be given to WWW browsing in a wireless environment. We are currently examining issues related to prefetching HTML documents to a proxy server to reduce the apparent latency of retrieving documents from remote servers. Since the wireless link is considered a scarce resource, we do not prefetch all the way to the browser executing on the mobile device. A number of prefetching strategies have been identified and are partially implemented. We collected extensive trace data from a number of Netscape users and built a test environment that allows us to examine the effects (individually and combined) of various prefetching strategies in a controlled manner. The necessary tests and their analysis are expected to be completed by the end of the summer. The results of one particular prefetching strategy, prefetching DNS lookups, will be presented at Wireless'97 in Calgary (see [23]).

Thomas Kunz
Department of Computer Science
University of Waterloo
Waterloo, Ontario N2L 3G1
Fri May 2 10:11:04 EDT 1997