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Mobile Agents in Networking and Distributed Computing by Sajal K. Das, Jiannong Cao

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Chapter 3

Distributed Security Algorithms for Mobile Agents

PAOLA FLOCCHINI

School of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, University of Ottawa, Canada.

NICOLA SANTORO

School of Computer Science, Carleton University, Canada.

3.1 INTRODUCTION

Mobile agents have been extensively studied for several years by researchers in artificial intelligence and in software engineering. They offer a simple and natural way to describe distributed settings where mobility is inherent and an explicit and direct way to describe the entities of those settings, such as mobile code, software agents, viruses, robots, and Web crawlers. Further, they allow to immediately express notions such as selfish behavior, negotiation, and cooperation arising in the new computing environments. As a programming paradigm, they allow a new philosophy of protocol and software design, bound to have an impact as strong as that caused by object-oriented programming. As a computational paradigm, mobile agent systems are an immediate and natural extension of the traditional message-passing settings studied in distributed computing.

For these reasons, the use of mobile agents is becoming increasingly popular when computing in networked environments, ranging from the Internet to the data grid, both as a theoretical computational paradigm and as a system-supported programming platform.

In networked systems that support autonomous mobile agents, a main concern is how to develop efficient agent-based system protocols, that ...

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