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The impact of wireless communication on distributed constraint satisfaction

Publication Type: 
Refereed Conference Meeting Proceeding
Distributed constraint satisfaction (DisCSP) models decision problems where physically distributed agents control different decision variables, but must communicate with each other to agree on a global solution. Most DisCSP research assumes an abstract communication layer based on a peer-to-peer wired network. However, many practical applications of distributed reasoning require to be implemented over wireless networks, which impose different communication costs, and may affect the performance of DisCSP algorithms. We study the impact of wireless network topology and routing on two leading DisCSP algorithms – ABT and AFC-ng. We introduce a new framework for experiments which models different communication layers. We show that the communication layer has a significant impact on the messaging costs, which can vary by over an order of magnitude. We also show the impact on computation time, where the equivalent non-concurrent constraint checks can vary by a factor of 6. Finally, we show that given a fixed agent ordering, changing the communications topology can increase the number of messages by up to 50%.
Conference Name: 
The 20th International Conference on Principles and Practice of Constraint Programming (CP'2014)
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Conference Location: 
National University of Ireland, Cork (UCC)
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