Title
 
The Virtual Pheromone Communication Primitive
Abstract

We propose a generic communication primitive designed for sensor networks. Our primitive hides details of network communication while retaining sufficient programmer control over the communication behavior of an application; it is designed to ease the burden of writing application-specific communication protocols for efficient, long-lived, fault-tolerant, and scalable applications. While classical network communication methods expect high-reliability links, our primitive works well in highly unreliable environments without needing to detect and prune unreliable links. Our primitive resembles the chemical markers used by many biological systems to solve distributed problems (pheromones). We develop and analyze the performance of an implementation of this primitive called Virtual Pheromone (VP). We demonstrate that VP can attain performance comparable to classical methods for applications such as sleep scheduling, routing, flooding, and cluster formation.

This is a minor revision of the paper included in the Proceedings of the Second International Conference on Distributed Computing in Sensor Sytems that includes an additional reference in the "Related Work" section.
In

Proceedings of the Second International Conference on Distributed Computing in Sensor Systems
Authors

Leo Szumel and John D. Owens
Year

2006
Links

paper {.pdf, .ps}, presentation {.odp, .ppt, .pdf}, bibtex {.tex}