Compression refers to the process of reducing the size or volume of data files or streams. The goal of compression is to represent the same information using fewer bits or bytes, leading to more efficient storage, transmission, and processing of data. Compression is widely used in various fields, including data storage, communication networks, and computational applications.


Transformer-Aided Semantic Communications

The transformer structure employed in large language models (LLMs), as a specialized category of deep neural networks (DNNs) featuring attention mechanisms, stands out for their ability to identify and highlight the most relevant aspects of input data. Such a capability is particularly beneficial in addressing a variety of communication challenges, notably in the realm of semantic communication where proper encoding of the relevant data is critical especially in systems with limited bandwidth. In this work, we employ vision transformers specifically for the purpose of compression and compact representation of the input image, with the goal of preserving semantic information throughout the transmission process. Through the use of the attention mechanism inherent in transformers, we create an attention mask. This mask effectively prioritizes critical segments of images for transmission, ensuring that the reconstruction phase focuses on key objects highlighted by the mask. Our methodology significantly improves the quality of semantic communication and optimizes bandwidth usage by encoding different parts of the data in accordance with their semantic information content, thus enhancing overall efficiency. We evaluate the effectiveness of our proposed framework using the TinyImageNet dataset, focusing on both reconstruction quality and accuracy. Our evaluation results demonstrate that our framework successfully preserves semantic information, even when only a fraction of the encoded data is transmitted, according to the intended compression rates.

Efficient Compression Method for Roadside LiDAR Data

Roadside LiDAR (Light Detection and Ranging) sensors are recently being explored for intelligent transportation systems aiming at safer and faster traffic management and vehicular operations. A key challenge in such systems is to efficiently transfer massive point-cloud data from the roadside LiDAR devices to the edge connected through a 5G network for real-time processing. In this paper, we consider the problem of compressing roadside (i.e. static) LiDAR data in real-time that provides a unique condition unexplored by current methods. Existing point-cloud compression methods assume moving LiDARs (that are mounted on vehicles) and do not exploit spatial consistency across frames over time.To this end, we develop a novel grouped wavelet technique for static roadside LiDAR data compression (i.e. SLiC). Our method compresses LiDAR data both spatially and temporally using a kd-tree data structure based on Haar wavelet coefficients. Experimental results show that SLiC can compress up to 1.9× more effectively than the state-of-the-art compression method can do. Moreover, SLiC is computationally more efficient to achieve 2× improvement in bandwidth usage over the best alternative. Even with this impressive gain in communication and storage efficiency, SLiC retains down-the-pipeline application’s accuracy.

Austere Flash Caching with Deduplication and Compression

Modern storage systems leverage flash caching to boost I/O performance, and enhancing the space efficiency and endurance of flash caching remains a critical yet challenging issue in the face of ever-growing data-intensive workloads. Deduplication and compression are promising data reduction techniques for storage and I/O savings via the removal of duplicate content, yet they also incur substantial memory overhead for index management. We propose AustereCache, a new flash caching design that aims for memory-efficient indexing, while preserving the data reduction benefits of deduplication and compression. AustereCache emphasizes austere cache management and proposes different core techniques for efficient data organization and cache replacement, so as to eliminate as much indexing metadata as possible and make lightweight in-memory index structures viable. Trace-driven experiments show that our AustereCache prototype saves 69.9-97.0% of memory usage compared to the state-of-the-art flash caching design that supports deduplication and compression, while maintaining comparable read hit ratios and write reduction ratios and achieving high I/O throughput.

Learning K-way D-dimensional Discrete Embedding for Hierarchical Data Visualization and Retrieval

Traditional embedding approaches associate a real-valued embedding vector with each symbol or data point, which is equivalent to applying a linear transformation to “one-hot” encoding of discrete symbols or data objects. Despite simplicity, these methods generate storage-inefficient representations and fail to effectively encode the internal semantic structure of data, especially when the number of symbols or data points and the dimensionality of the real-valued embedding vectors are large. In this paper, we propose a regularized autoencoder framework to learn compact Hierarchical K-way D-dimensional (HKD) discrete embedding of symbols or data points, aiming at capturing essential semantic structures of data. Experimental results on synthetic and real-world datasets show that our proposed HKD embedding can effectively reveal the semantic structure of data via hierarchical data visualization and greatly reduce the search space of nearest neighbor retrieval while preserving high accuracy.