Section: Partnerships and Cooperations
Participants : Carole Gallet Delporte, Hugues Fauconnier, Pierre Fraigniaud, Amos Korman, Adrian Kosowski, Laurent Viennot.
Managed by University Paris Diderot, C. Delporte and H. Fauconnier lead this project that grants 1 Ph. D.
Distributed computation keep raising new questions concerning computability and complexity. For instance, as far as fault-tolerant distributed computing is concerned, impossibility results do not depend on the computational power of the processes, demonstrating a form of undecidability which is significantly different from the one encountered in sequential computing. In the same way, as far as network computing is concerned, the impossibility of solving certain tasks locally does not depend on the computational power of the individual processes.
The main goal of DISPLEXITY (for DIStributed computing: computability and ComPLEXITY) is to establish the scientific foundations for building up a consistent theory of computability and complexity for distributed computing.
One difficulty to be faced by DISPLEXITY is to reconcile the different sub-communities corresponding to a variety of classes of distributed computing models. The current distributed computing community may indeed be viewed as two not necessarily disjoint sub-communities, one focusing on the impact of temporal issues, while the other focusing on the impact of spatial issues. The different working frameworks tackled by these two communities induce different objectives: computability is the main concern of the former, while complexity is the main concern of the latter.
Within DISPLEXITY, the reconciliation between the two communities will be achieved by focusing on the same class of problems, those for which the distributed outputs are interpreted as a single binary output: yes or no. Those are known as the yes/no-problems. The strength of DISPLEXITY is to gather specialists of the two main streams of distributed computing. Hence, DISPLEXITY will take advantage of the experience gained over the last decade by both communities concerning the challenges to be faced when building up a complexity theory encompassing more than a fragment of the field.
In order to reach its objectives, DISPLEXITY aims at achieving the following tasks:
Formalizing yes/no-problems (decision problems) in the context of distributed computing. Such problems are expected to play an analogous role in the field of distributed computing as that played by decision problems in the context of sequential computing.
Formalizing decision problems (yes/no-problems) in the context of distributed computing. Such problems are expected to play an analogous role in the field of distributed computing as that played by decision problems in the context of sequential computing.
Revisiting the various explicit (e.g., failure-detectors) or implicit (e.g., a priori information) notions of oracles used in the context of distributed computing allowing us to express them in terms of decidability/complexity classes based on oracles.
Identifying the impact of non-determinism on complexity in distributed computing. In particular, DISPLEXITY aims at a better understanding of the apparent lack of impact of non-determinism in the context of fault-tolerant computing, to be contrasted with the apparent huge impact of non-determinism in the context of network computing. Also, it is foreseen that non-determinism will enable the comparison of complexity classes defined in the context of fault-tolerance with complexity classes defined in the context of network computing.
Last but not least, DISPLEXITY will focus on new computational paradigms and frameworks, including, but not limited to distributed quantum computing and algorithmic game theory (e.g., network formation games).
The project will have to face and solve a number of challenging problems. Hence, we have built the DISPLEXITY consortium so as to coordinate the efforts of those worldwide leaders in Distributed Computing who are working in our country. A successful execution of the project will result in a tremendous increase in the current knowledge and understanding of decentralized computing and place us in a unique position in the field.
Laboratory of Information, Networking and Communication Sciences (LINCS)
Participants : François Durand, The-Dang Huynh, Leonardo Linguaglossa, Laurent Viennot.
Gang is participating to the LINCS, a research centre co-founded by Inria, Institut Mines-Télécom, UPMC and Alcatel-Lucent Bell Labs, dedicated to research and innovation in the domains of future information and communication networks, systems and services. Gang contributes to work on online social networks, content centric networking and forwarding information verification.