Fabrikant A., Koutsoupias E., Papadimitriou C.H. (2002) Heuristically Optimized Trade-Offs: A New Paradigm for Power Laws in the Internet. In: Widmayer P., Eidenbenz S., Triguero F., Morales R., Conejo R., Hennessy M. (eds) Automata, Languages and Programming. ICALP 2002. Lecture Notes in Computer Science, vol 2380. Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg
We propose a plausible explanation of the power law distributions of degrees observed in the graphs arising in the Internet topology [Faloutsos, Faloutsos, and Faloutsos, SIGCOMM 1999] based on a toy model of Internet growth in which two objectives are optimized simultaneously: “last mile” connection costs, and transmission delays measured in hops. We also point out a similar phenomenon, anticipated in [Carlson and Doyle, Physics Review E 1999], in the distribution of file sizes. Our results seem to suggest that power laws tend to arise as a result of complex, multi-objective optimization.