Guessing with limited memory

Wasim Huleihel, Salman Salamatian, Muriel Medard

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


Suppose that we wish to guess the realization x of a discrete random variable X taking values in a finite set, by asking sequential questions of the form 'Is X is equal to x?' exhausting the elements of X until the answer is Yes. [1, 2]. If the distribution of X is known to the guesser, and the guesser has memory of his previous has memory of his previous queries then the best strategy is to guess in decreasing order of probabilities. In this paper, we consider the problem of a memoryless guesser, namely, each new guess is independent of the previous guesses. We consider also the scenario of a guesser with a bounded number of guesses. For both cases we derive the optimal guessing strategies, and show new connections to Rényi entropy.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publication2017 IEEE International Symposium on Information Theory, ISIT 2017
PublisherInstitute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Inc.
Number of pages5
ISBN (Electronic)9781509040964
StatePublished - 9 Aug 2017
Externally publishedYes
Event2017 IEEE International Symposium on Information Theory, ISIT 2017 - Aachen, Germany
Duration: 25 Jun 201730 Jun 2017

Publication series

NameIEEE International Symposium on Information Theory - Proceedings


Conference2017 IEEE International Symposium on Information Theory, ISIT 2017

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Theoretical Computer Science
  • Information Systems
  • Modelling and Simulation
  • Applied Mathematics


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