Computing and Mathematical Sciences Colloquium

Monday April 4, 2016 4:00 PM

Information-Theoretic Lower Bounds for Distributed Function Computation

Speaker: Assistant Professor Maxim Raginsky , ECE Department and Coordinated Science Laboratory, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Location: Annenberg 105
In this talk, based on joint work with Aolin Xu, I will describe a general information-theoretic methodology for deriving lower bounds on the minimum time required by any scheme for distributed function computation over a network of point-to-point channels with finite capacity to achieve a given accuracy with a given probability. The main ingredients are: • A lower bound on conditional mutual information via so-called small ball probabilities, which captures the influence on the computation time of the joint distribution of the initial observations at the nodes, the structure of the function, and the desired level of accuracy. • An upper bound on conditional mutual information via strong data processing inequalities, which complements and strengthens the usual cutset-capacity upper bounds. • A multi-cutset analysis that quantifies the dissipation of information as it flows across a succession of cutsets in the network. This analysis is based on reducing a general network to a bidirected chain, and the results highlight the dependence of the computation time on the diameter of the network, a fundamental parameter that has been missing from most of the existing results on distributed computation over networks of noisy channels. Bio: Maxim Raginsky received the B.S. and M.S. degrees in 2000 and the Ph.D. degree in 2002 from Northwestern University, all in electrical engineering. He has held research positions with Northwestern, the University of Illinois at Urbana- Champaign (where he was a Beckman Foundation Fellow from 2004 to 2007), and Duke University. In 2012, he has returned to UIUC, where he is currently an Assistant Professor with the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering and the Coordinated Science Laboratory. In 2013, Prof. Raginsky has received a Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) Award from the National Science Foundation. Prof. Raginsky is a Senior Member of IEEE, and serves on the editorial board of Foundations and Trends in Communications and Information Theory. His research interests lie at the intersection of information theory, machine learning, and control.
Series Computing and Mathematical Sciences Colloquium Series

Contact: Carmen Nemer-Sirois at (626) 395-4561 carmens@caltech.edu