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1. (Ed.)
We introduce and study the communication complexity of computing the inner product of two vectors, where the input is restricted w.r.t. a norm N on the space ℝⁿ. Here, Alice and Bob hold two vectors v,u such that ‖v‖_N ≤ 1 and ‖u‖_{N^*} ≤ 1, where N^* is the dual norm. The goal is to compute their inner product ⟨v,u⟩ up to an ε additive term. The problem is denoted by IP_N, and generalizes important previously studied problems, such as: (1) Computing the expectation 𝔼_{x∼𝒟}[f(x)] when Alice holds 𝒟 and Bob holds f is equivalent to IP_{𝓁₁}. (2) Computing v^TAv where Alice has a symmetric matrix with bounded operator norm (denoted S_∞) and Bob has a vector v where ‖v‖₂ = 1. This problem is complete for quantum communication complexity and is equivalent to IP_{S_∞}. We systematically study IP_N, showing the following results, near tight in most cases: 1) For any symmetric norm N, given ‖v‖_N ≤ 1 and ‖u‖_{N^*} ≤ 1 there is a randomized protocol using 𝒪̃(ε^{-6} log n) bits of communication that returns a value in ⟨u,v⟩±ε with probability 2/3 - we will denote this by ℛ_{ε,1/3}(IP_N) ≤ 𝒪̃(ε^{-6} log n). In a special case where N = 𝓁_p and N^* = 𝓁_q for p^{-1} + q^{-1} = 1, we obtain an improved bound ℛ_{ε,1/3}(IP_{𝓁_p}) ≤ 𝒪(ε^{-2} log n), nearly matching the lower bound ℛ_{ε, 1/3}(IP_{𝓁_p}) ≥ Ω(min(n, ε^{-2})). 2) One way communication complexity ℛ^{→}_{ε,δ}(IP_{𝓁_p}) ≤ 𝒪(ε^{-max(2,p)}⋅ log n/ε), and a nearly matching lower bound ℛ^{→}_{ε, 1/3}(IP_{𝓁_p}) ≥ Ω(ε^{-max(2,p)}) for ε^{-max(2,p)} ≪ n. 3) One way communication complexity ℛ^{→}_{ε,δ}(N) for a symmetric norm N is governed by the distortion of the embedding 𝓁_∞^k into N. Specifically, while a small distortion embedding easily implies a lower bound Ω(k), we show that, conversely, non-existence of such an embedding implies protocol with communication k^𝒪(log log k) log² n. 4) For arbitrary origin symmetric convex polytope P, we show ℛ_{ε,1/3}(IP_{N}) ≤ 𝒪(ε^{-2} log xc(P)), where N is the unique norm for which P is a unit ball, and xc(P) is the extension complexity of P (i.e. the smallest number of inequalities describing some polytope P' s.t. P is projection of P').
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2. Given a metric space ℳ = (X,δ), a weighted graph G over X is a metric t-spanner of ℳ if for every u,v ∈ X, δ(u,v) ≤ δ_G(u,v) ≤ t⋅ δ(u,v), where δ_G is the shortest path metric in G. In this paper, we construct spanners for finite sets in metric spaces in the online setting. Here, we are given a sequence of points (s₁, …, s_n), where the points are presented one at a time (i.e., after i steps, we have seen S_i = {s₁, … , s_i}). The algorithm is allowed to add edges to the spanner when a new point arrives, however, it is not allowed to remove any edge from the spanner. The goal is to maintain a t-spanner G_i for S_i for all i, while minimizing the number of edges, and their total weight. Under the L₂-norm in ℝ^d for arbitrary constant d ∈ ℕ, we present an online (1+ε)-spanner algorithm with competitive ratio O_d(ε^{-d} log n), improving the previous bound of O_d(ε^{-(d+1)}log n). Moreover, the spanner maintained by the algorithm has O_d(ε^{1-d}log ε^{-1})⋅ n edges, almost matching the (offline) optimal bound of O_d(ε^{1-d})⋅ n. In the plane, a tighter analysis of the same algorithm provides an almost quadratic improvement of the competitive ratio to O(ε^{-3/2}logε^{-1}log n), by comparing the online spanner with an instance-optimal spanner directly, bypassing the comparison to an MST (i.e., lightness). As a counterpart, we design a sequence of points that yields a Ω_d(ε^{-d}) lower bound for the competitive ratio for online (1+ε)-spanner algorithms in ℝ^d under the L₁-norm. Then we turn our attention to online spanners in general metrics. Note that, it is not possible to obtain a spanner with stretch less than 3 with a subquadratic number of edges, even in the offline setting, for general metrics. We analyze an online version of the celebrated greedy spanner algorithm, dubbed ordered greedy. With stretch factor t = (2k-1)(1+ε) for k ≥ 2 and ε ∈ (0,1), we show that it maintains a spanner with O(ε^{-1}logε^{-1})⋅ n^{1+1/k} edges and O(ε^{-1}n^{1/k}log² n) lightness for a sequence of n points in a metric space. We show that these bounds cannot be significantly improved, by introducing an instance that achieves an Ω(1/k⋅ n^{1/k}) competitive ratio on both sparsity and lightness. Furthermore, we establish the trade-off among stretch, number of edges and lightness for points in ultrametrics, showing that one can maintain a (2+ε)-spanner for ultrametrics with O(ε^{-1}logε^{-1})⋅ n edges and O(ε^{-2}) lightness.
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3. Given a metric space ℳ = (X,δ), a weighted graph G over X is a metric t-spanner of ℳ if for every u,v ∈ X, δ(u,v) ≤ δ_G(u,v) ≤ t⋅ δ(u,v), where δ_G is the shortest path metric in G. In this paper, we construct spanners for finite sets in metric spaces in the online setting. Here, we are given a sequence of points (s₁, …, s_n), where the points are presented one at a time (i.e., after i steps, we have seen S_i = {s₁, … , s_i}). The algorithm is allowed to add edges to the spanner when a new point arrives, however, it is not allowed to remove any edge from the spanner. The goal is to maintain a t-spanner G_i for S_i for all i, while minimizing the number of edges, and their total weight. Under the L₂-norm in ℝ^d for arbitrary constant d ∈ ℕ, we present an online (1+ε)-spanner algorithm with competitive ratio O_d(ε^{-d} log n), improving the previous bound of O_d(ε^{-(d+1)}log n). Moreover, the spanner maintained by the algorithm has O_d(ε^{1-d}log ε^{-1})⋅ n edges, almost matching the (offline) optimal bound of O_d(ε^{1-d})⋅ n. In the plane, a tighter analysis of the same algorithm provides an almost quadratic improvement of the competitive ratio to O(ε^{-3/2}logε^{-1}log n), by comparing the online spanner with an instance-optimal spanner directly, bypassing the comparison to an MST (i.e., lightness). As a counterpart, we design a sequence of points that yields a Ω_d(ε^{-d}) lower bound for the competitive ratio for online (1+ε)-spanner algorithms in ℝ^d under the L₁-norm. Then we turn our attention to online spanners in general metrics. Note that, it is not possible to obtain a spanner with stretch less than 3 with a subquadratic number of edges, even in the offline setting, for general metrics. We analyze an online version of the celebrated greedy spanner algorithm, dubbed ordered greedy. With stretch factor t = (2k-1)(1+ε) for k ≥ 2 and ε ∈ (0,1), we show that it maintains a spanner with O(ε^{-1}logε^{-1})⋅ n^{1+1/k} edges and O(ε^{-1}n^{1/k}log² n) lightness for a sequence of n points in a metric space. We show that these bounds cannot be significantly improved, by introducing an instance that achieves an Ω(1/k⋅ n^{1/k}) competitive ratio on both sparsity and lightness. Furthermore, we establish the trade-off among stretch, number of edges and lightness for points in ultrametrics, showing that one can maintain a (2+ε)-spanner for ultrametrics with O(ε^{-1}logε^{-1})⋅ n edges and O(ε^{-2}) lightness.
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4. (Ed.)
Understanding the structure of minor-free metrics, namely shortest path metrics obtained over a weighted graph excluding a fixed minor, has been an important research direction since the fundamental work of Robertson and Seymour. A fundamental idea that helps both to understand the structural properties of these metrics and lead to strong algorithmic results is to construct a “small-complexity” graph that approximately preserves distances between pairs of points of the metric. We show the two following structural results for minor-free metrics: 1) Construction of a light subset spanner. Given a subset of vertices called terminals, and ϵ, in polynomial time we construct a sub graph that preserves all pairwise distances between terminals up to a multiplicative 1+ϵ factor, of total weight at most Oϵ(1) times the weight of the minimal Steiner tree spanning the terminals. 2) Construction of a stochastic metric embedding into low treewidth graphs with expected additive distortion ϵD. Namely, given a minor-free graph G=(V,E,w) of diameter D, and parameter ϵ, we construct a distribution D over dominating metric embeddings into treewidth-Oϵ(log n) graphs such that ∀u,v∈V, Ef∼D[dH(f(u),f(v))]≤dG(u,v)+ϵD. Our results have the following algorithmic consequences: (1) the first efficient approximation scheme for subset TSP in minor-free metrics; (2) the first approximation scheme for bounded-capacity vehicle routing in minor-free metrics; (3) the first efficient approximation scheme for bounded-capacity vehicle routing on bounded genus metrics. En route to the latter result, we design the first FPT approximation scheme for bounded-capacity vehicle routing on bounded-treewidth graphs (parameterized by the treewidth).
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