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A comparison of mobile agent and client-server paradigms for information retrieval tasks in virtual enterprises

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3 Author(s)
Jain, R. ; Appl. Res., Telcordia Technol. Inc., Morristown, NJ, USA ; Anjum, F. ; Umar, A.

In next-generation enterprises it will become increasingly important to retrieve information efficiently and rapidly from widely dispersed sites in a virtual enterprise, and the number of users who wish to do using wireless and portable devices will increase significantly. We consider the use of mobile agent technology rather than traditional client-server computing for information retrieval by mobile and wireless users in a virtual enterprise. We argue that to be successful mobile agent platforms must coexist with, and be presented to the applications programmer side-by-side with, traditional client-server middleware like CORBA and DOOM, and we sketch a middleware architecture for doing so. We then develop an analytical model that examines the claimed performance benefits of mobile agents over client-server computing for a mobile information retrieval scenario. Our evaluation of the model shows that mobile agents are not always better than client-server calls in terms of average response times; they are only beneficial if the space overhead of the mobile agent code is not too large or if the wireless link connecting the mobile user to the fixed servers of the virtual enterprise is error-prone

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Research Challenges, 2000. Proceedings. Academia/Industry Working Conference on

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