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P2P, Web Services, Wireless, and Beyond
O'Reilly Emerging Technology Conference
Westin Santa Clara
May 13-16, 2002 -- Santa Clara, CA

Building on the momentum and excitement of the O'Reilly Peer-to-Peer and Web Services Conference.



Swarm Intelligence
Eric Bonabeau, Ph.D., Chairman and Chief Scientific Officer, Icosystem Corporation

Track: Adaptive
Date: Wednesday, May 15
Time:†2:00pm - 2:45pm

The collective intelligence of social insects, swarm intelligence, offers a powerful new model for computing that resonates well with peer-to-peer. In swarm intelligence, autonomy, emergence, and distributed functioning replace control, preprogramming, and centralization. For example, an ant colony can collectively discover the shortest path to a food source by using chemical trails that evaporate over time if not reinforced. Virtual ants can be simulated and used to solve a variety of optimization, control and routing problems, from factory scheduling to telecommunications-network routing.

In some cases the ant approach is the best when applied to static problems, and itís always the one with the most flexibility in response to changing conditions. In a factory, when a machine breaks down or when the demand for products changes, the artificial ants quickly find new production schedules.

The swarm approach is starting to emerge as a natural way of controlling distributed systems, including P2P networks. Eric Bonabeau introduces swarm intelligence and its applications, and describes a range of applications relevant to peer-to-peer computing: (1) organizing emergent communities of interest in a P2P network; (2) ant-based P2P routing algorithms; (3) ant-based P2P approaches for inventory management; (4) ant-based algorithms for distributed caching.

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