Sennur Ulukus is plenary speaker at Canadian Workshop on Information Theory

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Professor Sennur Ulukus (ECE/ISR) was one of five plenary speakers at the 16th Canadian Workshop on Information Theory (CWIT), held June 2–5 at McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario. The prestigious workshop is an international conference on communications, information theory and signal processing.

Ulukus spoke on “Private Information Retrieval Capacity,” the problem of retrieving a file (a message) out of M messages from N distributed databases in such a way that no individual database can tell which message has been retrieved. Private information retrieval (PIR) originated in the computer science literature in late 1990s and recently has been revisited by the information theory community. Information-theoretic reformulation of the problem defines the “PIR capacity” as the largest number of bits that can be retrieved privately per download, equivalently, the smallest number of downloads needed per bit of privately retrieved information. In her talk, Ulukus described the problem, summarized breakthrough results in the history of the problem, and presented recent results.



Published June 6, 2019