# Questions tagged [approximation-hardness]

Hardness of approximation, aka inapproximability.

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### Is Maximum monotone NAE3SAT APX-hard?

I know that monotone NAE3SAT is NP-complete. I also know that MAXNAE3SAT is APX-complete. Note that I am using a monotone formula to mean with with no negated literals anywhere. Anyway, my question is ...
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### FPRAS to estimate the probability to get a cyclic subgraph of a directed graph

Consider a directed graph $G = (V, E)$ whose edges are annotated with independent probabilities of existence. This gives a probability distribution on the subgraphs of $G$; for instance, if each edge ...
1 vote
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### If it is $\#{P}$-hard to compute the sign of the permanent of any matrix, does that imply difficulty in relative approximation of the permanent?

I'm trying to understand the statement in the introduction (pg 1) of this work by Anari et all on approximating the permanent $\text{per}(A)$ of a positive semi-definite matrix $A$. The statement, I'm ...
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### Why are impossibility results harder for uniform sparsest cut than non-uniform?

My question is this: why is it the case that the uniform cost version of the Sparsest Cut problem has eluded hardness of approximation results whereas the non-uniform version has not; my intuition is ...
88 views

### When Exponential Costs are Essential for NP-Hardness?

In many NP-hard problem there is a budget constraint. Each element $e$ in the instance has a certain cost $c(e)$ and a profit $p(e)$; a feasible solution $S$ for the considered problem cannot exceed ...
1 vote
159 views

### 3 Matroid Intersection, a Special Case

It is well known that finding a maximum cardinality (or weight) common independent set in the intersection of 3 matroids is APX-Hard. Question: Does this problem remain NP-Hard if one of the matroids ...
152 views

### Hardness of Maximum Independent Set in 3-Colorable Graphs

Let $G = (V,E)$ be an undirected graph such that there is a proper coloring of the vertices of $G$ in three colors. Question: In such graphs, are there known results for the hardness of finding a ...
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### Is Finding an *Unbalanced* Biclique in Bipartite Graphs Hard?

In the balanced biclique in bipartite graphs (MBB) problem we are given a bipartite graph $G = (L,R,E), |L| = |R| = n$ and the goal is to find an induced subgraph of $G$, $G' = (L',R',E')$, with as ...
1 vote
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### Reduction from unweighted graphs to weighted graphs?

Are there any examples where you take a problem for the unweighted case and reduce it to the weighted case? (Not the other way around). My objective is to do something similar to the following: If the ...
1 vote
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### Approximation algorithm for balanced bipartite independent set?

The Problem: Given a bipartite graph $G = (L,R,E)$ with $|L|=|R|=n$, the balanced bipartite independent set problem asks us to output the largest vertex subsets $A\subseteq L, B\subseteq R$ of equal ...
1 vote
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### Set cover where consecutive sets differ by at most one item [closed]

First I define my version of the set cover problem: We have a collection of sets such as $S_1, \dots, S_m$ where each $S_i$ is a subset of $M=\{1,\dots, m\}$. The goal is to find the minimum number of ...
136 views

### Do there exist two equivalent objective functions one of which can be approximated but another one cannot?

I have two equivalent problems A and B, meaning that the optimal solution of one must be the optimal solution of another one. However, it seems that problem A can be approximated but B cannot. Below ... 154 views

### Computational complexity of minimum distance of rate $\frac{1}{2}$ codes

We know from Berlekamp, McEliece and Van Tilborg [On the inherent intractability of certain coding problems, IEEE Trans. Information Theory, 24 (1978)] that computing minimum distance of a (binary) ...
158 views

### Incorrect Lower Bound of k-Means++ Algorithm

The $k$-means++ algorithm is composed of two parts: Initialization part: the initial $k$ centers are chosen based on $D^2$ sampling. Expectation maximization part: the standard $k$-means algorithm (...
137 views

### Approximating Independent Dominating set on bipartite graphs

I'm interested in the following problem: given a bipartite graph, find the smallest independent set of vertices which dominate all other vertices. My question is: are there any positive results in the ...
273 views

### Improving the approximation in Stockmeyer's counting theorem

Given a $\#P$ function $f(x)$, we can use Stockmeyer's counting theorem to get an approximation $g(x)$ such that \begin{equation} \left(1 - \frac{1}{\text{poly}(n)} \right) f(x) \le g(x) \le \left(...
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### Is it possible to approximate the solution of NP-Hard problems in polynomial time using linear programming? [closed]

Suppose we have a NP-Hard problem such as the k-col, which is meant to determine if a graph may be colored using at most ...
98 views

### Optimization problems with same optimal value, but different approximation behavior

Context: related to this answer. I would like to see an example to emphasize that approximation behavior depends not only on the optimal value but also the set of solutions. This makes sense ...
105 views

### Complexity of a scheduling problem with a fixed left bound of jobs

Consider the following scheduling problem. We have a finite set of jobs $\mathcal{J}= \{j_1, j_2, ..., j_n\}$ to do. Every job $j_i$ has its own value $c_i$ (the amount of money we are paid for ...
1 vote
243 views

### Hardness of approximating acyclic chromatic number

I have some doubts on the inapproximability result for acyclic coloring presented in the paper New acyclic and star coloring algorithms with application to computing Hessians. They claim that there ...
183 views

### Problems that are NP-hard to approximate even when the input graph is regular

Are there graph problems which are NP-hard to approximate even when the input graph is regular? For instance, are there optimization problems that are NP-hard to approximate within $O(n^\epsilon)$ ...
78 views

### the shorstest cycle containing two given points

I am given a edge-weighted (multi)graph $G$ and two of its vertices, $u, v\in V(G)$. I want to find two edge-disjoint paths that connects $u$ and $v$ while minimizing the sum of the lengths of the ...
98 views

### How hard is it to approximate distance of linear code

I'm trying to figure out what is the current knowledge about how hard it is, given a generating matrix of a linear code over a field $F_{q}$, approximate it's distance. I of course found that ...
1 vote
70 views

### Sherali-Adams lowerbound instance of Unique Games constructed via CLT

The question comes from the following paper I have been reading:  Integrality Gaps for Sherali–Adams Relaxations. SODA'09. Moses Charikar, Konstantin Makarychev, Yury Makarychev. Theorem 6.1 of [...
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### How hard is it to determine ex(n,G)?

Define the extremal Turán function $ex(n,G)$ of a graph $G$ as the most edges a graph on $n$ vertices can have without having a subgraph that is isomorphic to $G$. This function is known ...
83 views

### Example of a hardness-of-approximation proof which improves the approximation factor?

Are there any examples of hardness-of-approximation reductions where we get a better hardness bound for the problem we've reduced to than the problem we've reduced from? In the examples I've seen so ...
75 views

### Hard family for degree-$D$ MAX-3LIN

Max 3LIN is the problem where one is given a linear system of equations $C$ over $\mathbb{F}_2$ with $3$ variables per equation, and needs to determine the maximum number of equations that can be ...
256 views

### Maximum Positive Negative Set Cover Problem

I am considering the following problem. Input: Given two disjoint subsets $A$ and $B$ and a collection $C$ of $k$ sets $S_1,S_2,\ldots,S_k$ where $S_i \subseteq A \cup B$ for all $i=1\ldots k$. ...
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### Is monotone 1-in-3 MAXSAT known to be APX hard?

Monotone 1-in-3 SAT is the problem where each clause of the SAT problem contains exactly 3 positive variables. The goal is to find an assignment such that exactly one variable is true in each clause ...
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### Is #PP2DNF hard to approximate?

The problem #PP2DNF asks to count the number of satisfying assignments of a positive partitioned 2-DNF Boolean formula, i.e., a formula $\phi$ on variables $X_1, \ldots, X_n, Y_1, \ldots, Y_m$ of the ...
195 views

### Minimum relevant variables in linear system - additive approximation

In the problem Minimum Relevant Variables in Linear System (Min-RVLS), the input is a linear system, e.g.: $$A x = b$$ and the goal is to find a solution $x$ with as few nonzero variables as ...
172 views

### Best polynomial-time approximation factor for NP-optimization problems

Let us say that a function $f(n)$ is the best approximation factor for an NP-optimization problem, if both of the following hold: There exist a polynomial-time algorithm $A,$ and an integer $n_0$, ...
64 views

### Distinguising between the cases of low or high cover number

Is there a known result saying that for some constants $0 < a < b < 1$, it is NP-hard to distinguish a graph having vertex cover number at most $a \cdot n$ from a graph having vertex cover ...
Suppose we are given a formula $\phi$ of 3-SAT, with variables $x_1,\dots, x_n$ and clauses $C_1,\dots, C_m$. Consider the graph $G_\phi$ where there is one node for each clause $C_i$, for each ...