Okanagan College professor Dr. Youry Khmelevsky (left) conducts server research with student Trevor Alstad.

Okanagan College professor Dr. Youry Khmelevsky (left) conducts server research with student Trevor Alstad.

College research paper earns world accolades

Paper explores improvements into both speed and connectivity in the online gaming world

A research paper born of collaboration between students, professors, and industry has resulted in international accolades for Okanagan College.

Exploring improvements into both speed and connectivity in the online gaming world, the paper titled Minecraft Computer Game Simulation and Network Performance Analysis received the best paper award at the second International VisioGame 2014 conference in Bandung, Indonesia held this past November. It will also be published in an upcoming journal with the U.K. Wessex Institute of Technology WitPress.

The paper was authored by fourth-year Okanagan College bachelor of computer information systems degree students Trevor Alstad and Riley Dunkin, and supervised by professor Youry Khmelevsky. It was written in collaboration with WTFast CEO Robert Bartlett and CTO Alex Needham, as well as Universite Paris-Est Creteil professor Dr. Gaetan Hains.

“Our goal was to look at online games optimization, performance, and monitoring of gamers private networks for faster gaming with better connections,” said Alstad.

“In particular we analyzed specific gaming metrics that hadn’t been explored yet. You could consider our research as a foundation for improving gaming networks within the industry. As a student, having the opportunity to be a part of this project and receiving this award goes to show the caliber of the programs available at the college, and it reinforces my opinion that this program was the right choice to prepare me for success in my career.”

The team created a virtual network with automated game players to test varying degrees of play in a simulated environment.

Gaming companies can use this research to help them determine the capacity of their games and overall server performance to enhance the end-user gamer’s experience.

“This research was presented in a highly competitive arena that included international university-academic, PhD students, and post-doctoral research,” said Khmelevsky.

“By teaching students what the tech industry needs and giving them co-op opportunities for applied research we provide them the tools they need to advance their studies and their careers.”

The six-month research project, from July to December 2014, was made possible by federal grant funding received from Canada’s Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC) and additional in-kind contributions from Okanagan based technology company WTFast.