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Sharing the Cost of Multicast Transmissions
 Journal of Computer and System Sciences
, 2001
"... We investigate costsharing algorithms for multicast transmission. Economic considerations point to two distinct mechanisms, marginal cost and Shapley value, as the two solutions most appropriate in this context. We prove that the former has a natural algorithm that uses only two messages per link o ..."
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Cited by 264 (18 self)
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We investigate costsharing algorithms for multicast transmission. Economic considerations point to two distinct mechanisms, marginal cost and Shapley value, as the two solutions most appropriate in this context. We prove that the former has a natural algorithm that uses only two messages per link of the multicast tree, while we give evidence that the latter requires a quadratic total number of messages. We also show that the welfare value achieved by an optimal multicast tree is NPhard to approximate within any constant factor, even for boundeddegree networks. The lowerbound proof for the Shapley value uses a novel algebraic technique for bounding from below the number of messages exchanged in a distributed computation; this technique may prove useful in other contexts as well. 1
Making Greed Work in Networks: A GameTheoretic Analysis of Switch Service Disciplines
 IEEE/ACM TRANSACTIONS ON NETWORKING
, 1994
"... This paper discusses congestion control from a gametheoretic perspective. There are two basic premises: (1) users are assumed to be independent and selfish, and (2) central administrative control is exercised only at the network switches. The operating points resulting from selfish user behavior ..."
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Cited by 203 (12 self)
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This paper discusses congestion control from a gametheoretic perspective. There are two basic premises: (1) users are assumed to be independent and selfish, and (2) central administrative control is exercised only at the network switches. The operating points resulting from selfish user behavior depend crucially on the service disciplines implemented in network switches. This effect is investigated in a simple model consisting of a single exponential server shared by many Poisson sources. We discuss the extent to which one can guarantee, through the choice of switch service disciplines, that these selfish operating points will be efficient and fair. We also discuss to what extent the choice of switch service disciplines can ensure that these selfish operating points are unique and are easily and rapidly accessible by simple selfoptimization techniques. We show that no service discipline can guarantee optimal efficiency. As for the other properties, we show that the traditio...
A Stochastic Equilibrium Model of Internet Pricing
 Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control
, 1995
"... Perhaps the greatest technological innovation of the next several decades will be universal access and utilization of the Internet. Already congestion is becoming a serious impediment to efficient utilization. We introduce a stochastic equilibrium concept for a general mathematical model of the Inte ..."
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Cited by 56 (7 self)
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Perhaps the greatest technological innovation of the next several decades will be universal access and utilization of the Internet. Already congestion is becoming a serious impediment to efficient utilization. We introduce a stochastic equilibrium concept for a general mathematical model of the Internet, and demonstrate that the efficient social welfare maximizing stochastic allocation of Internet traffic can be supported by optimal congestion prices. We further demonstrate that approximately optimal prices can be readily computed and implemented in a decentralized system by constructing a large computer simulation model. We also address the alternative of building excess capacity to avoid congestion. 2 1. Introduction The "information revolution" is currently underway and it is made possible by increasingly powerful personal computers and the rapidly developing information superhighway (The Internet). This revolution will foster a profound transformation of the economic organizati...
Hardness results for multicast cost sharing
 Theoretical Computer Science
, 2002
"... We continue the study of multicast cost sharing from the viewpoints of both computational complexity and economic mechanism design. We provide fundamental lower bounds on the network complexity of groupstrategyproof, budgetbalanced mechanisms. We also extend a classical impossibility result in gam ..."
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Cited by 29 (3 self)
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We continue the study of multicast cost sharing from the viewpoints of both computational complexity and economic mechanism design. We provide fundamental lower bounds on the network complexity of groupstrategyproof, budgetbalanced mechanisms. We also extend a classical impossibility result in game theory to show that no strategyproof mechanism can be both approximately efficient and approximately budgetbalanced. Our results show that one important and natural case of multicast cost sharing is an example of a canonical hard problem in distributed, algorithmic mechanism design; in this sense, they represent progress toward the development of a complexity theory of Internet computation.
The Application of Microeconomics to the Design of Resource Allocation and Control Algorithms
, 1989
"... In this thesis, we present a new methodology for resource sharing algorithms in distributed systems. We propose that a distributed computing system should be composed of a decentralized community of microeconomic agents. We show that this approach decreases complexity and can substantially improve ..."
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Cited by 21 (4 self)
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In this thesis, we present a new methodology for resource sharing algorithms in distributed systems. We propose that a distributed computing system should be composed of a decentralized community of microeconomic agents. We show that this approach decreases complexity and can substantially improve performance. We compare the performance, generality and complexity of our algorithms with noneconomic algorithms. To validate the usefulness of our approach, we present economies that solve three distinct resource management problems encountered in large, distributed systems. The first economy performs CPU load balancing and demonstrates how our approach limits complexity and effectively allocates resources when compared to noneconomic algorithms. We show that the economy achieves better performance than a representative noneconomic algorithm. The load balancing economy spa...
Learning and implementation on the internet
 Rutgers University, Department of Economics
, 1997
"... We address the problem of learning and implementation in the Internet. When agents play repeated games in distributed environments like the Internet, they have very limited a priori information about the other players and the payo matrix. Consequently, standard solution concepts like Nash equilibria ..."
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Cited by 20 (3 self)
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We address the problem of learning and implementation in the Internet. When agents play repeated games in distributed environments like the Internet, they have very limited a priori information about the other players and the payo matrix. Consequently, standard solution concepts like Nash equilibria, or even the serially undominated set, do not apply in such a setting. To construct more appropriate solution concepts, we rst describe the essential properties that constitute \reasonable &quot; learning behavior in distributed environments. We then study the convergence behavior of such algorithms; these results lead us to propose rather non traditional solutions concepts for this context. Finally, we discuss implementation of social choice functions with these solution concepts, and nd that only strictly coalitionally strategyproof social choice functions are implementable. 1 1
Why is Flow Control Hard: Optimality, Fairness, Partial and Delayed Information
 IN PROC. 2ND ORSA TELECOMMUNICATIONS CONFERENCE
, 1992
"... Flow control has been studied since the early stages of research in telecommunication networks. In these early studies the term flow control has been used to describe almost any type of network control. With the rapid growth of telecommunication networks control and management, flow control has evol ..."
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Cited by 16 (1 self)
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Flow control has been studied since the early stages of research in telecommunication networks. In these early studies the term flow control has been used to describe almost any type of network control. With the rapid growth of telecommunication networks control and management, flow control has evolved as a distinct class of algorithms and substantial research effort has been devoted to its study. An extensive survey of the most representative of these efforts is presented in this paper. The motivation for this work is the need for of a thorough, deep understanding of the flow control problem in gigabit, multiclass networks. A broad class of flow control schemes, namely optimal flow control, is considered within a game theoretic framework. The class of adaptive flow control mechanisms is not presented extensively, but valuable insight about the performance of such schemes can be gained from the study of optimal flow control policies. A number of important efforts to define and study fa...
A GameTheoretic Study of CSMA/CA Under a Backoff Attack
 IEEE/ACM Transactions on Networking
, 2006
"... Abstract—CSMA/CA, the contention mechanism of the IEEE 802.11 DCF medium access protocol, has recently been found vulnerable to selfish backoff attacks consisting in nonstandard configuration of the constituent backoff scheme. Such attacks can greatly increase a selfish station’s bandwidth share a ..."
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Cited by 16 (1 self)
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Abstract—CSMA/CA, the contention mechanism of the IEEE 802.11 DCF medium access protocol, has recently been found vulnerable to selfish backoff attacks consisting in nonstandard configuration of the constituent backoff scheme. Such attacks can greatly increase a selfish station’s bandwidth share at the expense of honest stations applying a standard configuration. The paper investigates the distribution of bandwidth among anonymous network stations, some of which are selfish. A station’s obtained bandwidth share is regarded as a payoff in a noncooperative CSMA/CA game. Regardless of the IEEE 802.11 parameter setting, the payoff function is found similar to a multiplayer Prisoners ’ Dilemma; moreover, the number (though not the identities) of selfish stations can be inferred by observation of successful transmission attempts. Further, a repeated CSMA/CA game is defined, where a station can toggle between standard and nonstandard backoff configurations with a view of maximizing a longterm utility. It is argued that a desirable station strategy should yield a fair, Pareto efficient, and subgame perfect Nash equilibrium. One such strategy, called CRISP, is described and evaluated. Index Terms—Ad hoc LAN, game theory, MAC protocol, selfish behavior. I.
Genericity and congestion control in selfish routing
 In Proceedings of the 43rd Annual IEEE Conference on Decision and Control (CDC
, 2004
"... In this paper we consider the problem of selfish routing in a congested data network, such as the Internet. While previous analyses (e.g., [RT00, Rou01])have discussed the possibility of large losses due to selfish routing, we present several reasons why one could expect typical losses to be small. ..."
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Cited by 13 (0 self)
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In this paper we consider the problem of selfish routing in a congested data network, such as the Internet. While previous analyses (e.g., [RT00, Rou01])have discussed the possibility of large losses due to selfish routing, we present several reasons why one could expect typical losses to be small. The first is based on a “generic analysis ” where we consider worst case topologies and latency functions, but ignore a small set of “transmission demands. ” We show that one can bound these “generic losses ” by the log of the network’s “criticallity factor, ” a reasonably natural parameter. Our second reason is based on the near universal use of TCP or some other congestion control mechanism in networks. We show that for a specific model of TCP, the losses due to selfish routing are quite small and suggest that this is true in general. Both of these results are also shown to hold for the (nonlinear) latency functions which commonly arise on the Internet. Lastly, we provide some nongametheoretic justifications for this analysis, which may be applicable to current networks, in which routing is not selfish. We show that in certain cases, common routing algorithms, such as OSPF, generate the same routes as selfish routing.
Learnability in a Class of NonAtomic Games arising on the Internet
, 1998
"... In this paper we study a large class of nonatomic games arising from interactions on the Internet, such as many users sharing a network link, researchers accessing a database or web server, subscribers to a network services provider trying to gain access to the modem pool and many more. We prov ..."
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Cited by 6 (1 self)
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In this paper we study a large class of nonatomic games arising from interactions on the Internet, such as many users sharing a network link, researchers accessing a database or web server, subscribers to a network services provider trying to gain access to the modem pool and many more. We provide simple and easily computable conditions under which these games are learnable by several models of learning, such as adaptive and sophisticated learning (Milgrom and Roberts [34]), calibrated learning (Foster and Vohra [8]), and reasonable learning (Friedman and Shenker [15]). Thus, using these methods one can evaluate the stability of such games on the Internet or in other settings in which players must learn over time. Running head: Learnability in Internet Games I would like to thank Michelle Goman, Adam Landsberg, Herv'e Moulin, and Scott Shenker for helpful conversations. An earlier version of this paper was circulated under the title "NonAtomic Games with Multiple Externali...