Published on Wed Sep 09 2009

Greedy Gossip with Eavesdropping

Deniz Ustebay, Boris Oreshkin, Mark Coates, Michael Rabbat

In gossip algorithms, nodes in the network randomlycommunicate with their neighbors and exchange information iteratively. This paper presents greedy gossip with eavesdropping (GGE), a novel randomized gossip algorithm.

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Abstract

This paper presents greedy gossip with eavesdropping (GGE), a novel randomized gossip algorithm for distributed computation of the average consensus problem. In gossip algorithms, nodes in the network randomly communicate with their neighbors and exchange information iteratively. The algorithms are simple and decentralized, making them attractive for wireless network applications. In general, gossip algorithms are robust to unreliable wireless conditions and time varying network topologies. In this paper we introduce GGE and demonstrate that greedy updates lead to rapid convergence. We do not require nodes to have any location information. Instead, greedy updates are made possible by exploiting the broadcast nature of wireless communications. During the operation of GGE, when a node decides to gossip, instead of choosing one of its neighbors at random, it makes a greedy selection, choosing the node which has the value most different from its own. In order to make this selection, nodes need to know their neighbors' values. Therefore, we assume that all transmissions are wireless broadcasts and nodes keep track of their neighbors' values by eavesdropping on their communications. We show that the convergence of GGE is guaranteed for connected network topologies. We also study the rates of convergence and illustrate, through theoretical bounds and numerical simulations, that GGE consistently outperforms randomized gossip and performs comparably to geographic gossip on moderate-sized random geometric graph topologies.