UTCS Colloquia: Robbert Van Renesse/Cornell University: "Refining the Way to Consensus" ACES 2.402, Monday, March 23, 2009 3:30 p.m.

Contact Name: 
Jenna Whitney
Date: 
Mar 23, 2009 3:30pm - 4:30pm

Type of Talk:  UTCS Colloquium

Speaker/Affiliati

on:  Robbert Van Renesse/Cornell University

Date/Time:  M

onday, March 23, 2009  3:30 p.m.

Location:  ACES 2.402<

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Host:  Lorenzo Alvisi

Talk Title:  Refining the Way
to Consensus"

Talk Abstract:

In distributed systems, co

nsensus is the problem of having a group of processes agree on a proposed v

alue or operation.  While many consensus protocols have been designed

, I venture that they are still poorly understood.  I will present a
sequence of five specifications of consensus with increasingly lower-level
detail.  Each such refinement step involves an important insight abo

ut how consensus protocols work. Using refinement mappings one can show tha

t each lower-level specification implements the specification one level up.

Speaker Bio:

Robbert Van Renesse is a Principal Research

Scientist in the Department of Computer Science of Cornell University. He r

eceived his Ph.D. from the Vrije Universiteit in Amsterdam in 1989 where he
developed the Amoeba Distributed Operating System. Subsequently he worked

on the Plan 9 operating system at AT&T Bell Laboratories. Since joinin

g Cornell in 1991 he has worked on fault-tolerant distributed systems. He c

o-founded D.A.G. Labs that was acquired by FAST, which was subsequently ac

quired by Microsoft, and Reliable Network Solutions whose technology was a

cquired by Amazon.com. Other companies that use technology developed by Van
Renesse include IBM and Stratus.