New Setting (new + setting)

Distribution by Scientific Domains

Selected Abstracts

Scheduling time-critical requests for multiple data objects in on-demand broadcast

Victor C. S. Lee
Abstract On-demand broadcast is an effective data dissemination approach in mobile computing environments. Most of the recent studies on on-demand data broadcast assume that clients request only a single-data-object at a time. This assumption may not be practical for the increasingly sophisticated mobile applications. In this paper, we investigate the scheduling problem of time-critical requests for multiple data objects in on-demand broadcast environments and observe that existing scheduling algorithms designed for single-data-object requests perform unsatisfactorily in this new setting. Based on our analysis, we propose new algorithms to improve the system performance. Copyright 2010 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. [source]

Reverse Auctions with Multiple Reinforcement Learning Agents,

Subhajyoti Bandyopadhyay
ABSTRACT Reverse auctions in business-to-business (B2B) exchanges provide numerous benefits to participants. Arguably the most notable benefit is that of lowered prices driven by increased competition in such auctions. The competition between sellers in reverse auctions has been analyzed using a game-theoretic framework and equilibria have been established for several scenarios. One finding of note is that, in a setting in which sellers can meet total demand with the highest-bidding seller being able to sell only a fraction of the total capacity, the sellers resort to a mixed-strategy equilibrium. Although price randomization in industrial bidding is an accepted norm, one might argue that in reality managers do not utilize advanced game theory calculations in placing bids. More likely, managers adopt simple learning strategies. In this situation, it remains an open question as to whether the bid prices converge to the theoretical equilibrium over time. To address this question, we model reverse-auction bidding behavior by artificial agents as both two-player and n -player games in a simulation environment. The agents begin the game with a minimal understanding of the environment but over time analyze wins and losses for use in determining future bids. To test for convergence, the agents explore the price space and exploit prices where profits are higher, given varying cost and capacity scenarios. In the two-player case, the agents do indeed converge toward the theoretical equilibrium. The n -player case provides results that reinforce our understanding of the theoretical equilibria. These results are promising enough to further consider the use of artificial learning mechanisms in reverse auctions and other electronic market transactions, especially as more sophisticated mechanisms are developed to tackle real-life complexities. We also develop the analytical results when one agent does not behave strategically while the other agent does and show that our simulations for this environment also result in convergence toward the theoretical equilibrium. Because the nature of the best response in the new setting is very different (pure strategy as opposed to mixed), it indicates the robustness of the devised algorithm. The use of artificial agents can also overcome the limitations in rationality demonstrated by human managers. The results thus have interesting implications for designing artificial agents in automating bid responses for large numbers of bids where human intervention might not always be possible. [source]

Rendezvous search when marks are left at the starting points

Vic Baston
Abstract Leaving marks at the starting points in a rendezvous search problem may provide the players with important information. Many of the standard rendezvous search problems are investigated under this new framework which we call markstart rendezvous search. Somewhat surprisingly, the relative difficulties of analysing problems in the two scenarios differ from problem to problem. Symmetric rendezvous on the line seems to be more tractable in the new setting whereas asymmetric rendezvous on the line when the initial distance is chosen by means of a convex distribution appears easier to analyse in the original setting. Results are also obtained for markstart rendezvous on complete graphs and on the line when the players' initial distance is given by an unknown probability distribution. 2001 John Wiley & Sons, Inc. Naval Research Logistics 48: 722,731, 2001 [source]

International medical graduates: Learning for practice in Alberta, Canada

Jocelyn Lockyer PhD
Abstract Introduction: There is little known about the learning that is undertaken by physicians who graduate from a World Health Organization,listed medical school outside Canada and who migrate to Canada to practice. What do physicians learn and what resources do they access in adapting to practice in Alberta, a province of Canada? Methods: Telephone interviews with a theoretical sample of 19 IMG physicians were analyzed using a grounded theory constant comparative approach to develop categories, central themes, and a descriptive model. Results: The physicians described two types of learning: learning associated with studying for Canadian examinations required to remain and practice in the province and learning that was required to succeed at clinical work in a new setting. This second type of learning included regulations and systems, patient expectations, new disease profiles, new medications, new diagnostic procedures, and managing the referral process. The physicians "settled" into their new setting with the help of colleagues; the Internet, personal digital assistants (PDAs), and computers; reading; and continuing medical education programs. Patients both stimulated learning and were a resource for learning. Discussion: Settling into Alberta, Canada, physicians accommodated and adjusted to their settings with learning activities related to the clinical problems and situations that presented themselves. Collegial support in host communities appeared to be a critical dimension in how well physicians adjusted. The results suggest that mentoring programs may be a way of facilitating settlement. [source]

When Classic Ethnographic Work Is Made Impossible: The Human Politics of Research in India

Pnina Motzafi-Haller
SUMMARY In this personal account, I describe the first days of research I begun in Rajasthan, in India in the winter of 2008. This graphic narrative of my encounters with my research interlocutors includes not only what I learned from my research subjects, a group of multiply marginalized people known as the Banjara. It also depicts my conversations with academic colleagues and assistants, local officials, and translators. It describes the human politics that had, in fact, blocked my ability to carry out classical ethnographic research work that I was so intent on carrying out and offers the readers a look into the scene that is often excluded from ethnographic reports. I propose that these encounters are part and parcel of the learning process in a new setting. I argue that a detailed exploration of my own position in the field,one that exposes the confusion, the ignorance, the struggles, the affection, and the dislike I develop toward a range of people I met in these first days,is necessary for writing in a humanistic way about the process through which we learn what we claim we know. Through this reflexive article, I offer a model for anthropological writing that is intellectually engaging, politically aware, and humane. [source]

Multinationals and institutional competitiveness

Peer Hull Kristensen
Abstract This article discusses how institutional competitiveness and multinationals are mutually enriching concepts. Multinationals transfer capital, technology, and knowledge into new settings. They allow subsidiaries access to new markets, new resources, and new processes. Potentially, therefore, institutional competitiveness can be increased by the presence of multinational corporations (MNCs) and their subsidiaries. However, this depends on the type of multinational and the type of institutional context. By differentiating two types of MNC in terms of short-term and long-term orientations to investment, and two types of host institutional setting in terms of strength of institutional complementarities and interconnectedness, we develop a typology of four types of interaction between MNCs and institutional settings. We then analyze how each type influences institutional competitiveness. We conclude that these outcomes, while structurally shaped, are still dependent on how actors (individuals, firms, collective organizations, and governments) strategize to develop institutional frameworks in the context of highly competitive global markets. [source]