Saturday 21st of January 2017
On 28th April 2012

An Exclusive Interview with Walid Fahs from the Computer and Communication Department, Islamic University of Lebanon, Lebanon

"If I have to sum up my life to talk about one successful moment I would never skip mentioning the moment I have been announced as a PHD graduate after years of research and hard-work. What is special about this success is that it is continuous; I still feel it and live it every time I publish a paper."

My name is Walid Fahs, I received a bachelor of Computer and Communication Engineering from IUL University in Lebanon in 2003 and a master’s degree of Engineering in Networking from University of Troyes in France in 2004, my Master thesis was entitled "Multicast Strategies for Robots Moving within the Coverage of a WLAN". I obtained a PhD degree in networking from the University of Blaise Pascal, France, in 2008 under the title "Simulation of the intracellular traffic conditions of a wireless network in an industrial environment with a split model". The first step of this work consisted of finding the propagation model best suited to our industrial application. The purpose of the second step was to minimize the time necessary so that all mobiles within the same cell of a 802.11b network can exchange the information shared during their co-operation. Currently I am the head of the Computer and Communication Department at the Faculty of Engineering at the Islamic University of Lebanon and a lecturer at the Lebanese University.In the mean time I am interested in the research domains of access selection and decision methods in heterogeneous networks by using neural network and fuzzy logic methods in addition to the optimization of the Back-off time delay in 802.11 networks.

How did you gain interest in Wireless Networking?
My research interest in wireless networking started when I obtained my engineering diploma where it was a new and evolving research domain in Lebanon accompanied by a large need for optimization of wireless technologies.The wireless communication is still a very interesting issue. Accordingly my choice of the master’s thesis was oriented towards the local wireless network, and I continued in this domain during and after the PhD study.

What trend do you foresee in wireless communication?
Wireless network technologies are expected to play an important role in the future. Most researchers are motivated towards integrating different wireless technologies to facilitate control, management for every useful device or equipment. In this context there exists a major role for artificial intelligence. Additionally wireless networking has gained a wide importance due to diffusion of mobile devices usage.

How do you approach research? How long does it take to complete a paper?
First I identify my current research objective, and then I investigate many related work papers. After synthesizing my main idea to solve the problem, I work on developing an analytical model to be then evaluated by simulation models using several network simulators like NS2, Opnet, Matlab, etc. The next step include results verification and evaluation by comparing them with previous ones. For a conference the paper preparation requires around 1 to 2 months. For journal, it requires around 2 to 3 months.

What did you investigate in your last publication?
In the last publication entitled “Enhanced Backoff Method used between Mobiles Moving in 802.11 networks”, we worked on minimizing the exchange time between mobiles moving in a 802.11 network by modifying the Binary Backoff algorithm.

What topics have you been teaching until now at the Islamic University of Lebanon?
I have lectured many courses in the networking such as network essential, routing, switching, cryptography and network security, fixed telephony and mobile network in different universities in Lebanon.

What was your most successful moment?
If I have to sum up my life to talk about one successful moment I would never skip mentioning the moment I have been announced as a PHD graduate after years of research and hard-work. What is special about this success is that it is continuous; I still feel it and live it every time I publish a paper.

What would be your recommendation(s) and advise to young researchers who would want to pursue research in wireless networking?
For young researchers I say, it’s the era of wireless communication, and so far wireless has invaded all the domains which makes it a need in most of our regular every day activities. These are enough motivations for a researcher to go ahead and work in such a challenging topic.

What are the current research projects you are working on?
My current work is focused on minimizing the exchange time cycle between mobiles moving in 802.11 networks. The optimization of this time was carried out by modifying the binary exponential Backoff algorithm by using fuzzy logic methods to choose the best Backoff parameters in case of collision or success of transmission.

What is your feeling about open-access publication? Do you recommend it?
Open-access publication is very important to advance the research, especially in Lebanon where access to papers is very difficult due to the financial problems in Lebanese establishments. I recommend the researchers to publish their works in open access journals to allow the access to their projects by a larger group of scientists; in fact, IJCSI Journal is very important in our country because of the immediate access it can grant for the wide range of researchers and students.

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