Kirk L. Kroeker "Technology, too, obeys the law of responding, of answering a call at whose origin we are encountering so much static." -- Avital Ronell

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Biology-Inspired Networking

By Kirk L. Kroeker

Researchers have developed a new networking algorithm, modeled after the neurological development of the fruit fly, to help distributed networks self-organize more efficiently.

The fruit fly’s neurological development is serving as a model for a networking algorithm that researchers say has the potential to obsolesce traditional methods for determining peer relationships in distributed networks. Without prior knowledge of how cells are connected, the fly’s developing nervous system allocates certain cells as leaders that provide direct connections with other nerve cells. That development process, the researchers say, is similar to conventional schemes used to manage distributed networks but is much simpler and more robust than anything humans have yet devised.

(This article appeared in CACM, vol. 54, no. 6, June 2011, pp. 11-13.)

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