Distributed Computing

, Volume 21, Issue 2, pp 87–102 | Cite as

A simple population protocol for fast robust approximate majority

Article

Abstract

We describe and analyze a 3-state one-way population protocol to compute approximate majority in the model in which pairs of agents are drawn uniformly at random to interact. Given an initial configuration of x’s, y’s and blanks that contains at least one non-blank, the goal is for the agents to reach consensus on one of the values x or y. Additionally, the value chosen should be the majority non-blank initial value, provided it exceeds the minority by a sufficient margin. We prove that with high probability n agents reach consensus in O(n log n) interactions and the value chosen is the majority provided that its initial margin is at least \({\omega(\sqrt{n} \,{\rm log}\, n)}\). This protocol has the additional property of tolerating Byzantine behavior in \({o(\sqrt{n})}\) of the agents, making it the first known population protocol that tolerates Byzantine agents.

Keywords

Population protocols Majority Epidemics Byzantine faults 

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Computer ScienceYale UniversityNew HavenUSA
  2. 2.New HavenUSA

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