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Consensus

Milan Vojnovic ( Microsoft Research Cambridge )
The problem of ranking of a set of alternatives based on preferences held by nodes connected by a network is considered under limited memory per node and limited information communicated between nodes. In particular, for the case of binary alternatives, each node in the network is assumed to prefer one of the two alternatives, and the goal for each node is to correctly identify the alternative that is preferred by majority of nodes. This type of a distributed computation problem has been studied under various names such as consensus, k-selection, majority, median and quantile computation. The model is an abstraction that is of interest in various systems such as distributed peer-to-peer systems, databases, dynamics of opinion formation in social networks, and biological computations.

Speaker bio

Milan Vojnovic is a researcher with Microsoft Research Cambridge. He is also an affiliated lecturer at the University of Cambridge with the Department of Pure Mathematics and Mathematical Statistics. He received his Ph.D. in Communication Systems from EPFL, Switzerland, in 2003, and both M.Sc. and B.Sc. in Electrical Engineering from the University of Split, Croatia, in 1998 and 1995, respectively. He was a visiting researcher with Mathematics Research Center, Bell Laboratories, Murray Hill, New Jersey, in 2001. His research interests are in the general space of algorithms, especially in the context of large-scale distributed systems and incentives in online services.

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