Routing and Deadlock

Computer networks are based on passing messages from computer to computer. This sounds simple in principle, but in practice all sorts of contention and bottlenecks can occur.

This activity gives some first hand experience of such issues, with a game for a group of students.

Routing and Deadlock

Activity description (PDF)



  • The Routing and Deadlock game in action, from a poster at a conference in Japan

Related Resources


Curriculum Links

Great Principles of Computer Science [info]
  • Coordination
ACM K12 Curriculum [info]
  • Level I (Grades 3–-5) Topic 11: develop a simple understanding of an algorithm
New Zealand Curriculum [info]
  • Technology Level 1: Planning for Practice
    • Outline a general plan to support the development of an outcome, identifying appropriate steps and resources
  • Health and Physical Education Level 1: Identity, sensitivity, and respect
    • Demonstrate respect through sharing and cooperation in groups