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Communication protocols and internet architectures. Anyone take this?

Still undecided about my final class i am thinking either more programming or something directly related to work.
I write documentation for HP's cloud platform and although i have learned a fair amount this year id like to have a better foundation. I considered cloud computing but it is not offered in spring.
Comm protocols has also always been on my maybe list as it is pretty fundamental.
If anyone has taken it and has any advice, id love to hear it
I have some familiarity...


  • It's a difficult class, both homework and exams. Lots of required reading. I would take another networking class first. The instructor didn't cover HTTP which really annoyed me since as a web developer its what I deal with most often.
  • nancymicnancymic Posts: 185
    Ya i really wanted to take it but instead will take one somewhere else when i finish here in the spring. I can see it will take a ton of time which i may not have this semester
  • isinyaginisinyagin Posts: 12
    I took the class a couple of years ago. I have mixed feelings about it. For a person who loves to build things I was kind of bored because all assignments were pencil and paper; the course didn't require any programming knowledge at all. Second, for a CS class we were assigned too many readings per week - over 200 pages - including extremely boring RFCs which are impossible to remember and are often hard to comprehend. We also barely touched HTTP, but spent a lot of time on lower layers - ethernet, IP, TCP. The last part of the course where we discussed email, security and video/audio protocols was interesting. In general the class spends a lot of time on protocol design and barely touches implementation/practical sides of computer networking.

    Problem sets were fine and challenged you to actually do the assigned readings. Exams were hard mostly because you had to keep a lot of information in your head.

    I talked to a couple of enrolled students who worked in networking (cisco) and they said that they course was EXTREMELY useful for their daily jobs and that the instructors really knows what he's teaching.

    I wish the course had a programming component in C (CS61 would be a good prerequisite) and covered more algorithms behind networks rather than protocol design.
    I personally wouldn't recommend it for a software engineer because you will not become a better programer after it, but if you're interested in networks and protocols and want to learn the details of how the internet works and learn by reading, it must be a good class.
  • nancymicnancymic Posts: 185
    Thanks I made the right choice not taking this. I need to learn this stuff but perhaps not with the pressure of grades.
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