Message to Group Members


QUICK LINKS:  To prospective students & visiting scholars  |  To new members  |   Advice ... 

  • Hands-on projects for Master's theses and research topics for Ph.D. dissertations are available ...    

To prospective students & visiting scholars: [top]

Our research interests lie in the theory and practice of networked cyber-physical systems, with a special focus on wireless, vehicular, embedded, and sensor networks. Before contacting me, please check out the following information that may clarify some questions you have:

  • By focusing on high-quality research, and by collaborating with other research groups in academia and industry, our research program provides students with access to world-class facilities, real-world experience, and ample opportunities of contributing to the research community.
Being in a strong department at an urban research university, you will also have a great life experience on campus here at the cultural center of Detroit, Michigan.

On a related note, the National Science Foundation Research Ranking has recently ranked
Wayne State University (WSU) 63rd among all American universities and 42nd among all American public universities; The Scientist has also ranked WSU as one of the best academic institutions to work in USA. WSU is also among the very first US institutions who grant Ph.D. degrees to Chinese students.

Here is a short introduction to Wayne State University, the City of Detroit, and the university and midtown Detroit.
  • Presently, I may only fund Ph.D. students who are dedicated to high quality research. Preference will be given to students who have demonstrated strong research potential.
I will be happy to work with visiting scholars who have strong research records in wireless networks, sensor networks, mobile computing, or related fields. I will also be happy to work with Master and undergraduate students who have strong systems building capabilities and are deeply interested in the missions of my research group.

If you are applying for a visiting scholar position, please check out the WSU application process specified here.

If you are an undergraduate student, you may consider applying for scholarships from the Undergraduate Research Program and the McNair Scholars Program

  • Please visit my website to check out my research and publications. If you are interested in working with me as a student, I would encourage you to take my courses, to participate in my research meetings, and/or to conduct research projects with me (of course, after you join WSU).
If you are a Ph.D. student, I expect you to not only have strong systems building skills, but also to have solid background in mathematical modeling and analysis (as evidenced, for instance, by your solution to this open-ended modeling problem).
  • Given the high volume of inquiries, I may not be able to respond to every one of them.
Thanks and best wishes. 


[A mathematical modeling problem] Faster QuickPass System

"QuickPass" systems are increasingly appearing to reduce people's time waiting in line, whether it is at tollbooths, amusement parks, or elsewhere. Consider the design of a QuickPass system for an amusement park. The amusement park has experimented by offering QuickPasses for several popular rides as a test. The idea is that for certain popular rides you can go to a kiosk near that ride and insert your daily park entrance ticket, and out will come a slip that states that you can return to that ride at a specific time later. For example, you insert your daily park entrance ticket at 1:15 pm, and the QuickPass states that you can come back between 3:30 and 4:30 pm when you can use your slip to enter a second, and presumably much shorter, line that will get you to the ride faster. To prevent people from obtaining QuickPasses for several rides at once, the QuickPass machines allow you to have only one active QuickPass at a time.

You have been hired as one of several competing consultants to improve the operation of QuickPass. Customers have been complaining about some anomalies in the test system.  For example, customers observed that in one instance QuickPasses were being offered for a return time as long as 4 hours later. A short time later on the same ride, the QuickPasses were given for times only an hour or so later. In some instances, the lines for people with Quickpasses are nearly as long and slow as the regular lines.

The problem then is to propose and test schemes for issuing QuickPasses in order to increase people's enjoyment of the amusement park. Part of the problem is to determine what criteria to use in evaluating alternative schemes. Include in your report a non-technical summary for amusement park executives who must choose between alternatives from competing consultants.  [back]

Acknowledgment: the above problem is extracted from the 2004 Mathematical Contest in Modeling organized by The Consortium for Mathematics and its Applications.

To new members of my research group [top]

If you are a new member of our research group, please join the DNC and DNC-reading mailinglists. Please also find below some information that will help build up your background for conducting research within our group.
  • Helpful coursework:
In addition to classical coursework in Computer Science (computer networks and distributed computing, in particular), coursework or background in probability theory, stochastic processes, operations research, graph theory, real analysis, performance evaluation, communication theory, control theory, and formal methods will be of great help in your research.
  • Books of interest:
    • Anurag Kumar, D. Manjunath, Joy Kuri, Wireless Networking, Morgan Kaufmann, 2008.
    • Anurag Kumar, D. Manjunath, Joy Kuri, Communication Networking: An Analytical Approach, Morgan Kaufmann, 2004.
    • Deepankar Medhi et al., Network routing: algorithms, protocols, and architectures, Morgan Kaufmann, 2007
    • Raj Jain, The Art of Computer Systems Performance Analysis, John Wiley & Sons, INC.
    • Bhaskar Krishnamachri, Networking Wireless Sensors, Cambridge University Press, 2006.
    • Feng Zhao, Leonidas Guidas, Wireless Sensor Networks: An Information Processing Approach, Morgan Kaufmann.
    • Charles E. Perkins, Mobile Ad Hoc Networking, Addison Wesley.
    • Larry Peterson and Bruce Davie, Computer Networks: A Systems Approach, Morgan Kaufmann.
    • Theodore S. Rappaport, Wireless communications: principles and practice, Prentice Hall. (Chapters 4-6)

Advice ... [top]
  • On (Professional) Life:
  • On research:  
  • On time management & good habits:
    • Stephen R. Covey, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, Simon & Schuster Inc.
    • Alan Lakein, How to Get Control of Your Time and Your Life, SIGNET, 1973.
    • Stephen R. Covey, First Things First.
    • Chris McChesney, Sean Covey, Jim Huling, The 4 Disciplines of Execution: Achieving Your Wildly Important Goals. Free Press, 2012
      • The 4 Disciplines are: 1) Focus on the Wildly Important, 2) Act on the Lead Measures, 3) Keep a Compelling Scoreboard, and 4) Create a Cadence of Accountability. 
    • Kelly McGonigal, The Willpower Instinct: How Self-Control Works, Why it Matters, and What You Can Do to Get More of it, Penguin Group, 2012 
    • Stephen M.R. Covey, The Speed of Trust: The One Thing that Changes Everything, Free Press, 2006
    • Richard M. Reis, Tomorrow's Professor: Preparing for Scientific Careers in Science and Engineering, IEEE Press.