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The distributed hash table (DHT) mechanisms have been proposed to manage data in very large, structured peer-to-peer (P2P) systems. DHT algorithms provide efficient exact-match object search capabilities without requiring global indexing and are hence extremely scalable. However, range queries - which are very common with spatial data - cannot be executed efficiently in these systems because the adoption of uniform hash functions to ensure excellent load balancing unfortunately destroys any existing data locality. In this report we propose a novel technique to preserve spatial locality information while also keeping some of the load balancing properties of DHT based systems. We describe our design as an extension of content-addressable networks (CAN) and illustrate the feasibility of supporting spatial range queries.
Date of Conference: 28-30 Sept. 2004