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We propose a method to compute a probably approximately correct (PAC) normalized histogram of observations with a refresh rate of Θ(1) time units per histogram sample on a random geometric graph with noise-free links. The delay in computation is Θ(√n) time units. We further extend our approach to a network with noisy links. While the refresh rate remains Θ(1) time units per sample, the delay increases to Θ(√n log n). The number of transmissions in both cases is Θ(n) per histogram sample. The achieved Θ(1) refresh rate for PAC histogram computation is a significant improvement over the refresh rate of Θ(1/log n) for histogram computation in noiseless networks. We achieve this by operating in the supercritical thermodynamic regime where large pathways for communication build up, but the network may have more than one component. The largest component however will have an arbitrarily large fraction of nodes in order to enable approximate computation of the histogram to the desired level of accuracy. Operation in the supercritical thermodynamic regime also reduces energy consumption. A key step in the proof of our achievability result is the construction of a connected component having bounded degree and any desired fraction of nodes. This construction may also prove useful in other communication settings on the random geometric graph.
Date of Publication: Jan. 2011