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Many existing Medium Access Control (MAC) protocols utilize past information (e.g., the results of transmission attempts) to adjust the transmission parameters of users. This paper provides a general framework to express and evaluate distributed MAC protocols utilizing a finite length of memory for a given form of feedback information. The authors define protocols with memory in the context of a slotted random access network with saturated arrivals. They introduce two performance metrics, throughput and average delay, and formulate the problem of finding an optimal protocol.
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