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Colloquium - Grunwald

Software and Systems for Software and Cognitive Radio
Department of Computer Science
12/11/2008
3:30pm-4:30pm

Advances in networking have been accelerated by the use of abstractions, such as "layering", and the ability to apply those abstractions across multiple communication media. Wireless communication provides the greatest challenge to these clean abstractions because of the lossy communication media. For many networking researchers, wireless communications hardware starts and ends with WiFi, or 802.11 compliant hardware. However, there has been a recent growth in software defined radio, which allows the basic radio medium to be manipulated by programs. This mutable radio layer has allowed researchers to exploit the physical properties of radio communication to overcome some of the challenges of the radio media; in certain cases, researchers have been able to develop mechanisms that are difficult to implement in electrical or optical media.

In this talk, I describe a combination of on-going projects to build prototypes of software defined radios and the challenges that arise in the operating system, computer architecture and programming languages for such systems as well as novel applications that improve network efficiency by violating layering. This work is part of a series of NSF and DARPA funded programs about software and cognitive radios.

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