Interactive Networks

This project introduces the Interactive Network concept and describes the design and implementation of the first prototype.

In an Interactive Network humans become an integral part of the control system to manage programmable networks and grid networks. The implementation consists of a multi-touch table that allows multiple persons to manage and monitor a programmable network simultaneously. The amount of interactive control of the multi-touch interface is illustrated by the ability to create and manipulate paths, which are either end-to-end, multicast or paths that contain loops. First experiences with the multi-touch table show its potential for collaborative management of large-scale infrastructures.

The system uses a custom build multi-touch solution (camera based) and the interface has been implemented using Adobe AIR / Actionscript 3.

Project details

Project name: Interactive Networks (University of Amsterdam, 2008)
Project members: Rudolf Strijkers, Laurence Muller, Mihai Cristea, Robert Belleman, Cees de Laat, Peter Sloot and Robert Meijer
Published paper(s): Interactive Control over a Programmable Computer Network Using a Multi-touch Surface

Employer: University of Amsterdam / Scientific Visualization and Virtual Reality Research Group
Date: 2008
Used technologies: Adobe AIR, Actionscript 3 (client) and Java (Server)
Code size: 4170 lines of code (AS3) / 939 lines of comments



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Interactive Networks Demo (complete)

Interactive Networks explanation by Rudolf in Dutch

Interactive Networks explanation for Gordon Cook (


Below is a brief overview of the user interface and interaction methods that I developed for the Interactive Networks project.

(a) Creating a new stream route by drawing a line over the nodes

drawpathCreating a point to point path (red is source, green is possible destination):


Extending a point-to-point path to a multicast path:


Creating a point-to-point path containing a loop:


(b) Adjusting node parameters dynamically
By tapping a node, it will open up a circle that contains all adjustable parameters. Touching a parameter will pop up an UI with sliders and buttons.


(c) Monitoring the current bandwidth and load of a node
(flashing red means the node is under heavy load and needs user attention)

(d) Viewing the video stream on a node