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1. In this article, we study a wide range of variants for computing the (discrete and continuous) Fréchet distance between uncertain curves. An uncertain curve is a sequence of uncertainty regions, where each region is a disk, a line segment, or a set of points. A realisation of a curve is a polyline connecting one point from each region. Given an uncertain curve and a second (certain or uncertain) curve, we seek to compute the lower and upper bound Fréchet distance, which are the minimum and maximum Fréchet distance for any realisations of the curves. We prove that both problems are NP-hard for the Fréchet distance in several uncertainty models, and that the upper bound problem remains hard for the discrete Fréchet distance. In contrast, the lower bound (discrete [ 5 ] and continuous) Fréchet distance can be computed in polynomial time in some models. Furthermore, we show that computing the expected (discrete and continuous) Fréchet distance is #P-hard in some models. On the positive side, we present an FPTAS in constant dimension for the lower bound problem when Δ/δ is polynomially bounded, where δ is the Fréchet distance and Δ bounds the diameter of the regions. We also show a near-linear-time 3-approximation for the decision problem on roughly δ-separated convex regions. Finally, we study the setting with Sakoe–Chiba time bands, where we restrict the alignment between the curves, and give polynomial-time algorithms for the upper bound and expected discrete and continuous Fréchet distance for uncertainty modelled as point sets.
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Free, publicly-accessible full text available July 31, 2024
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We consider the following surveillance problem: Given a set P of n sites in a metric space and a set R of k robots with the same maximum speed, compute a patrol schedule of minimum latency for the robots. Here a patrol schedule specifies for each robot an infinite sequence of sites to visit (in the given order) and the latency L of a schedule is the maximum latency of any site, where the latency of a site s is the supremum of the lengths of the time intervals between consecutive visits to s. When k = 1 the problem is equivalent to the travelling salesman problem (TSP) and thus it is NP-hard. For k ≥ 2 (which is the version we are interested in) the problem becomes even more challenging; for example, it is not even clear if the decision version of the problem is decidable, in particular in the Euclidean case. We have two main results. We consider cyclic solutions in which the set of sites must be partitioned into 𝓁 groups, for some 𝓁 ≤ k, and each group is assigned a subset of the robots that move along the travelling salesman tour of the group at equal distance from each other. Our first main result is that approximating the optimal latency of the class of cyclic solutions can be reduced to approximating the optimal travelling salesman tour on some input, with only a 1+ε factor loss in the approximation factor and an O((k/ε) ^k) factor loss in the runtime, for any ε > 0. Our second main result shows that an optimal cyclic solution is a 2(1-1/k)-approximation of the overall optimal solution. Note that for k = 2 this implies that an optimal cyclic solution is optimal overall. We conjecture that this is true for k ≥ 3 as well. The results have a number of consequences. For the Euclidean version of the problem, for instance, combining our results with known results on Euclidean TSP, yields a PTAS for approximating an optimal cyclic solution, and it yields a (2(1-1/k)+ε)-approximation of the optimal unrestricted (not necessarily cyclic) solution. If the conjecture mentioned above is true, then our algorithm is actually a PTAS for the general problem in the Euclidean setting. Similar results can be obtained by combining our results with other known TSP algorithms in non-Euclidean metrics.
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In the standard planar k-center clustering problem, one is given a set P of n points in the plane, and the goal is to select k center points, so as to minimize the maximum distance over points in P to their nearest center. Here we initiate the systematic study of the clustering with neighborhoods problem, which generalizes the k-center problem to allow the covered objects to be a set of general disjoint convex objects C rather than just a point set P. For this problem we first show that there is a PTAS for approximating the number of centers. Specifically, if r_opt is the optimal radius for k centers, then in n^O(1/ε²) time we can produce a set of (1+ε)k centers with radius ≤ r_opt. If instead one considers the standard goal of approximating the optimal clustering radius, while keeping k as a hard constraint, we show that the radius cannot be approximated within any factor in polynomial time unless P = NP, even when C is a set of line segments. When C is a set of unit disks we show the problem is hard to approximate within a factor of (√{13}-√3)(2-√3) ≈ 6.99. This hardness result complements our main result, where we show that when the objects are disks, of possibly differing radii, there is a (5+2√3)≈ 8.46 approximation algorithm. Additionally, for unit disks we give an O(n log k)+(k/ε)^O(k) time (1+ε)-approximation to the optimal radius, that is, an FPTAS for constant k whose running time depends only linearly on n. Finally, we show that the one dimensional version of the problem, even when intersections are allowed, can be solved exactly in O(n log n) time.
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Given a point set P in the plane, we seek a subset Q ⊆ P, whose convex hull gives a smaller and thus simpler representation of the convex hull of P. Specifically, let cost(Q,P) denote the Hausdorff distance between the convex hulls CH(Q) and CH(P). Then given a value ε > 0 we seek the smallest subset Q ⊆ P such that cost(Q,P) ≤ ε. We also consider the dual version, where given an integer k, we seek the subset Q ⊆ P which minimizes cost(Q,P), such that |Q| ≤ k. For these problems, when P is in convex position, we respectively give an O(n log²n) time algorithm and an O(n log³n) time algorithm, where the latter running time holds with high probability. When there is no restriction on P, we show the problem can be reduced to APSP in an unweighted directed graph, yielding an O(n^2.5302) time algorithm when minimizing k and an O(min{n^2.5302, kn^2.376}) time algorithm when minimizing ε, using prior results for APSP. Finally, we show our near linear algorithms for convex position give 2-approximations for the general case.
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