Lower bounds for restricted-use objects: Extended abstract

James Aspnes, Hagit Attiya, Keren Censor-Hillel, Danny Hendler

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review

6 Scopus citations


Concurrent objects play a key role in the design of applications for multi-core architectures, making it imperative to precisely understand their complexity requirements. For some objects, it is known that implementations can be significantly more efficient when their usage is restricted. However, apart from the specific restriction of one-shot implementations, where each process may apply only a single operation to the object, very little is known about the complexities of objects under general restrictions. This paper draws a more complete picture by defining a large class of objects for which an operation applied to the object can be "perturbed" L consecutive times, and proving lower bounds on the time and space complexity of deterministic implementations of such objects. This class includes bounded-value max registers, limited-use approximate and exact counters, and limited-use collect and compare-and- swap objects; L depends on the number of times the object can be accessed or the maximum value it supports. For implementations that use only historyless primitives, we prove lower bounds of Ω(min(log L; n)) on the worst-case step complexity of an operation, where n is the number of processes; we also prove lower bounds of Ω(min(L; n)) on the space complexity of these objects. When arbitrary primitives can be used, we prove that either some operation incurs Ω(min(log L; n)) memory stalls or some operation performs Ω(min(log L; n)) steps.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationSPAA'12 - Proceedings of the 24th ACM Symposium on Parallelism in Algorithms and Architectures
Number of pages10
StatePublished - 27 Jul 2012
Event24th ACM Symposium on Parallelism in Algorithms and Architectures, SPAA'12 - Pittsburgh, PA, United States
Duration: 25 Jun 201227 Jun 2012

Publication series

NameAnnual ACM Symposium on Parallelism in Algorithms and Architectures


Conference24th ACM Symposium on Parallelism in Algorithms and Architectures, SPAA'12
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityPittsburgh, PA


  • Concurrent objects
  • Lower bounds
  • Perturbable objects
  • Restricted-use objects

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Software
  • Theoretical Computer Science
  • Hardware and Architecture


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