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In this paper, the authors present a set of simple extensions to the IEEE 802.11 MAC that allow the efficient realization of wireless network coding. The main characteristic of the proposed protocol is that it improves the efficiency of packet coding decisions and allows verifying the decodability of packets before they are transmitted over the network. The previous goals are achieved by adopting two techniques. First, they introduce the concept of Opportunistic ACKnowledgments (OACKs), and second, they adopt the use of virtual buffers that are used for selectively storing overheard packets by a particular node. They performed extensive simulations for several ad hoc network topologies that test the proposed protocol.
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