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Wireless sensor networks involve very large numbers of small, low-power, wireless devices. Given their unattended nature, and their potential applications in harsh environments, the paper needs a monitoring infrastructure that indicates system failures and resource depletion. This paper briefly describes an architecture for sensor network monitoring, then focus on one aspect of this architecture: continuously computing aggregates (sum, average, count) of network properties (loss rates, energy-levels etc., packet counts). The contributions are two-fold. First, the paper proposes a novel tree construction algorithm that enables energy-efficient computation of some classes of aggregates. Second, it shows through actual implementation and experiments that wireless communication artifacts in even relatively benign environments can significantly impact the computation of these aggregate properties.
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