I enjoy the challenge of solving problems and doing original research that can have an impact. I have been actively involved in research since beginning my undergraduate degree. Below are descriptions of some of the projects that I have worked with links to my publications.

Internet Censorship and Circumvention

I am currently researching Internet censorship from a technical and human rights perspective. This research will form the basis of my Master's research paper, and I am also aiming to publish a survey paper on the topic.

pWeb: A Personal Interface to the World Wide Web

My research interests lie primarily in the fields of computer networks and distributed systems and how these technologies can be used to support the common good. Since starting graduate studies in 2012, I have been working with a small, dedicated team of researchers led by Dr. Raouf Boutaba at the University of Waterloo to develop a system called pWeb. The pWeb Project aims to create a state-of-the-art peer-to-peer web hosting infrastructure that is capable of supporting emerging Web technologies such as WebSockets and HTML5 features. We have designed pWeb from the ground up to provide a multimedia-rich user experience that rivals the contemporary client-server hosting infrastructure.

A few systems exist or have been proposed that share some similarities with pWeb; however, none of these share the all of the same goals. CoralCDN is a hybrid system that uses a peer-to-peer network of caches to reduce the load on a centralized Web server but does not provide dynamic content hosting nor does it focus on censorship resistance. Freenet is a distributed data store that has a lot in common with the first generation of pWeb but it is an older system that has not been designed for modern challenges; as a result, content can be slow to access and dynamic pages are not supported. This is a timely project with the potential for high impact as online surveillance and censorship are growing in scale, scope and sophistication around the world. pWeb will help shape debate from a technical perspective, enhance democracy and preserve free speech online, maintaining the Web as a place of informed public debate.

The pWeb technical reports describe in detail the development of the architecture, design, and implementation of the pWeb peer-to-peer Web hosting system. I prepared these reports for publication on the David R. Cheriton School of Computer Science website based on internal deliverables produced for Orange Labs, our industry sponsor, that were comprised of research, software and documentation. pWeb consists of four main software components: the Home Agent, DNS Gateway, Crawler and client software. For the work that led to the final deliverable, I completed research that led to the design of the DNS Gateway that provides a DNS interface to the pWeb device naming system. I drew on my industry experience as I implemented a production quality version of the Gateway from scratch according to the DNS protocol specification and evaluated the performance of a global, location-aware deployment. My research also led to the development of the Crawler—a component that traverses the graph of Home Agents in the pWeb Plexus network and indexes device and content metadata to construct a searchable database of all devices and content hosted in the system. In June 2013, I flew to France to present the results of our research at Orange Lab’s facility in Paris. The paper pWeb: A Personal Interface to the World Wide Web encompasses our latest research and includes an evaluation of the scalability and performance of the Crawler on a simulated global deployment of nearly 30,000 Home Agents supporting 2 billion simulated mobile devices. A public deployment of pWeb is accessible though the website and the DNS Gateway and Crawler are available as free software. This research is significant because Orange (formerly France Télécom) may use some of the results in future products and services and pWeb has the potential to revolutionize Web hosting as we know it by giving end users virtually unlimited resources to publish and host content.


Ahmed, R., Chowdhury, S. R., Pokluda, A., Bari, M.F., Boutaba, R., and Mathieu, B. (2014) pWeb: A Personal Interface to the Word Wide Web. To appear in IFIP Networking 2014. (international conference; graduate work).

Pokluda, A., Aartail, A., Bari, M.F., Ahmed, R., and Boutaba, R. (2013) pWeb Peer-to-Peer Web Hosting Communication System and Dynamic Web Hosting. University of Waterloo Computer Science Technical Report CS-2013-15. 88 pages (graduate work in collaboration with industry sponsor).

Bari, M.F., Chowdhury, S.R., Pokluda, A., Ahmed, R. and Boutaba, R. (2013) Advanced pWeb Features. University of Waterloo Computer Science Technical Report CS-2013-13. 64 pages (graduate work in collaboration with industry sponsor).

Ahmed, R., Bari, M.F., Boutaba, R., Chowdhury, S.R., Mathieu, B., and Pokluda, A. (2013) pWeb: A P2P Web Hosting Framework. University of Waterloo Computer Science Technical Report CS-2013-12. 11 pages (PhD work in collaboration with industry sponsor).

Dynamic Resource Management using Golondrina

I started the research that led to the paper “Managing dynamic memory allocations in a cloud through Golondrina” in the summer of 2009 when I received an NSERC USRA that enabled me to team up with Dr. Hanan Lutfiyya and Ph.D. candidate Gastón Keller to investigate dynamic resource management in a datacenter. This work was an extension of Keller’s Master’s thesis that investigated the dynamic provisioning of processor time across all virtual machines hosted in a datacenter. My contribution was to extend this work to include heuristics for allocating main memory in addition to processor time. My heuristics attempted to identify and resolve resource stress situations by first searching for local solutions, such as adjusting the ratio of memory allocated to virtual machines hosted on a single physical machine, and failing that, by searching for a global solution, such as redistributing virtual machines across physical machines through one or more migrations. I continued to work on this project through the school year and evaluated my implementation of a policy-based resource management framework on a small cluster at the university. My background research, implementation and experimental results formed the basis of my undergraduate honors thesis. I published this paper based on our research after I graduated. I also presented this paper at the 4th International Distributed Management Task Force (DMTF) Academic Alliance Workshop on Systems and Virtualization Management.


Pokluda, A., Keller, G., and Lutfiyya, H. (2010) Managing Dynamic Memory Allocations in a Cloud through Golondrina (camera-ready version). Proc. 4th International DMTF Academic Alliance Workshop on Systems and Virtualization Management (SVM). 7-14 (international conference; undergraduate work).

Pokluda, A. (2010) Managing Dynamic Memory Allocations in a Cloud through Golondrina. 4th International DMTF Academic Alliance Workshop on Systems and Virtualization Management (SVM). (international conference; oral presentation; undergraduate work).

Pokluda, A. (2010) Dynamic Resource Management using Operating System-Level Virtualization. University of Western Ontario. (undergraduate honors thesis and presentation).

Undergraduate Summer Research

I have been the recipient of several undergraduate student research awards that enabled me to work with talented professors as a research assistant. In 2008 I participated in the Summer Student Program at the Space Telescope Science Institute which is operated by the Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy for NASA. I worked with Drs. Alberto Conti and Carol Christian to successfully develop a Web service that automatically searches for and displays information about celestial bodies visible in Google Sky.

In the summer of 2007 I worked with Dr. Todd Simpson to develop calibration software for the LEO 1530 field emission scanning electron microscope in the University of Western Ontario Nanofabrication Laboratory. I worked with Dr. Willy Lennard during the summer of 2006 to redesign Quark, a software package for simulating Rutherford backscattering spectrometry (a form of ion beam analysis) and operated the Tandetron particle accelerator to determine the structure and composition of unknown materials.