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On The Capacity of Distributed Decisions

Ashutosh Sabharwal


A key characteristic of wireless networks is that no node in the network has complete information about the network state. At best, nodes have a local view of the network. As a result, they have to make distributed decisions on their transmission parameters. How does this information asymmetry at each node impact resulting global network capacity? In this talk, we will formulate the problem of studying the information theoretic capacity of distributed decisions. We will derive exact capacity for several important cases, which reveal new protocol design principles. Finally, we will discuss the impact of new results on design of next-generation networks.


Ashutosh Sabharwal received his B.Tech from Indian Institute of Technology, New Delhi, and MS and PhD from the Ohio State University. Currently he is an Assistant Professor at Rice, where he also the Director of Center for Multimedia Communication. His main research interests are information theoretic foundations, protocols and platforms for high performance wireless networks. He is the founder of WARP project (, which is a clean-slate network prototyping platform widely in use at many research labs.

Ashutosh Sabharwal Headshot
Ashutosh Sabharwal
Rice University
EEB 105
9 Mar 2010, 10:30am until 11:30am