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We consider a consensus algorithm in which every node in a sequence of undirected, B-connected graphs assigns equal weight to each of its neighbors. Under the assumption that the degree of each node is fixed (except for times when the node has no connections to other nodes), we show that consensus is achieved within a given accuracy ε on n nodes in time B+4n3 Bln(2n/ε). Because there is a direct relation between consensus algorithms in time-varying environments and in homogeneous random walks, our result also translates into a general statement on such random walks. Moreover, we give a simple proof of a result of Cao, Spielman, and Morse that the worst case convergence time becomes exponentially large in the number of nodes n under slight relaxation of the degree constancy assumption.
Date of Publication: Oct. 2013