Questions tagged [lower-bounds]

questions about lowerbounds on functions, usually the complexity of an algorithm or a problem

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123 votes
18 answers
9k views

Examples of the price of abstraction?

Theoretical computer science has provided some examples of "the price of abstraction." The two most prominent are for Gaussian elimination and sorting. Namely: It is known that Gaussian ...
65 votes
5 answers
2k views

Problems that can be used to show polynomial-time hardness results

When designing an algorithm for a new problem, if I can't find a polynomial time algorithm after a while, I might try to prove it is NP-hard instead. If I succeed, I've explained why I couldn't find ...
Robin Kothari's user avatar
51 votes
4 answers
5k views

What are the best current lower bounds on 3SAT?

What are the best current lower bounds for time and circuit depth for 3SAT?
Joe Fitzsimons's user avatar
50 votes
0 answers
2k views

Monotone complexity of s-t connectivity

In the problem CONN, we obtain a directed $n$-vertex graph (encoded as a boolean string of $n^2$ bits, one for each potential edge), and want to decide whether there is a path between all $n^2$ pairs $...
Stasys's user avatar
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42 votes
2 answers
2k views

Are the problems PRIMES, FACTORING known to be P-hard?

Let PRIMES (a.k.a. primality testing) be the problem: Given a natural number $n$, is $n$ a prime number? Let FACTORING be the problem: Given natural numbers $n$, $m$ with $1 \leq m \leq n$, ...
k m's user avatar
  • 421
40 votes
3 answers
2k views

Circuit lower bounds over arbitrary sets of gates

In the 1980s, Razborov famously showed that there are explicit monotone Boolean functions (such as the CLIQUE function) that require exponentially many AND and OR gates to compute. However, the basis ...
Scott Aaronson's user avatar
39 votes
9 answers
4k views

Optimal greedy algorithms for NP-hard problems

Greed, for lack of a better word, is good. One of the first algorithmic paradigms taught in introductory algorithms course is the greedy approach. Greedy approach results in simple and intuitive ...
Shiva Kintali's user avatar
33 votes
2 answers
1k views

Cohomological approach to boolean complexity

A few years ago, there was some work by Joel Friedman relating lower circuit bounds to Grothendieck cohomology (see papers: http://arxiv.org/abs/cs/0512008, http://arxiv.org/abs/cs/0604024). Has this ...
Marcin Kotowski's user avatar
32 votes
0 answers
6k views

Combinatorics of Bellman-Ford or how to make cyclic graphs acyclic?

Roughly speaking, my question is: How costly is to make a cyclic graph acyclic while preserving all simple $s$-$t$ paths? Let $K_n$ be a complete undirected graph on vertices $\{0,1,\ldots,n+1\}$. (...
Stasys's user avatar
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30 votes
1 answer
2k views

Fourier coefficients Boolean Functions described by Bounded Depth Circuits with AND OR and XOR gates

Let $f$ be a Boolean function and let's think about f as a function from $\{-1,1\}^n$ to $\{ -1,1 \}$. In this language the Fourier expansion of f is simply the expansion of f in terms of square free ...
Gil Kalai's user avatar
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29 votes
7 answers
3k views

Proving lower bounds by proving upper bounds

The recent breakthrough circuit complexity lower-bound result of Ryan Williams provides a proof technique that uses upper-bound result to prove complexity lower-bounds. Suresh Venkat in his answer to ...
Mohammad Al-Turkistany's user avatar
26 votes
4 answers
2k views

Separating Logspace from Polynomial time

It is clear that any problem that is decidable in deterministic logspace ($L$) runs in at most polynomial time ($P$). There is a wealth of complexity classes between $L$ and $P$. Examples include $NL$,...
Shiva Kintali's user avatar
25 votes
3 answers
4k views

Nontrivial algorithm for computing a sliding window median

I need to calculate the running median: Input: $n$, $k$, vector $(x_1, x_2, \dotsc, x_n)$. Output: vector $(y_1, y_2, \dotsc, y_{n-k+1})$, where $y_i$ is the median of $(x_i, x_{i+1}, \dotsc, x_{i+k-...
Jukka Suomela's user avatar
25 votes
2 answers
2k views

Formula size lower bounds for AC0 functions

Question: What is the best known formula size lower bound for an explicit function in AC0? Is there an explicit function with an $\Omega(n^2)$ lower bound? Background: Like most lower bounds, ...
Robin Kothari's user avatar
25 votes
1 answer
1k views

Why is HAMILTONIAN CYCLE so different from PERMANENT?

A polynomial $f(x_1,\ldots,x_n)$ is a monotone projection of a polynomial $g(y_1,\ldots,y_m)$ if $m$ = poly$(n)$, and there is an assignment $\pi:\{y_1,\ldots,y_m\}\to\{x_1,\ldots,x_n, 0,1\}$ such ...
Stasys's user avatar
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23 votes
3 answers
1k views

Representing OR with polynomials

I know that trivially the OR function on $n$ variables $x_1,\ldots, x_n$ can be represented exactly by the polynomial $p(x_1,\ldots,x_n)$ as such: $p(x_1,\ldots,x_n) = 1-\prod_{i = 1}^n\left(1-x_i\...
matthon's user avatar
  • 659
23 votes
2 answers
991 views

Best current space lower bound for SAT?

Following on from a previous question, what are the best current space lower bounds for SAT? With a space lower bound I here mean the number of worktape cells used by a Turing machine which uses a ...
András Salamon's user avatar
22 votes
6 answers
2k views

References on Circuit Lower Bounds

Preamble Interactive proof systems and Arthur-Merlin protocols were introduced by Goldwasser, Micali and Rackoff and Babai back in 1985. At first, it was thought that the former is more powerful than ...
Sadeq Dousti's user avatar
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22 votes
2 answers
1k views

How does the Mulmuley-Sohoni geometric approach to producing lower bounds avoid producing natural proofs (in the Razborov-Rudich sense)?

The exact phrasing of the title is due to Anand Kulkarni (who proposed this site be created). This question was asked as an example question, but I’m insanely curious. I know very little about ...
Ross Snider's user avatar
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22 votes
2 answers
603 views

Lower bounds for constant-depth formulae?

We know a lot about the limitations of (polynomial size) constant-depth circuits. Since (polynomial size) constant-depth formulae are an even more restricted model of computation, all problems known ...
Robin Kothari's user avatar
22 votes
2 answers
2k views

Lower bound for determinant and permanent

In light of the recent chasm at depth-3 result (which among other things yields a $2^{\sqrt{n}\log{n}}$ depth-3 arithmetic circuit for the $n \times n $ determinant over $\mathbb{C}$), I have the ...
Nikhil's user avatar
  • 1,344
22 votes
2 answers
1k views

Protocol partition number and deterministic communication complexity

Besides (deterministic) communication complexity $cc(R)$ of a relation $R$, another basic measure for the amount of communication needed is the protocol partition number $pp(R)$. The relation between ...
Hermann Gruber's user avatar
21 votes
2 answers
1k views

Can addition be carried out in less than depth 5?

Using carry look ahead algorithm we can compute addition using a polynomial size depth 5 (or 4?) $AC^0$ circuit family. Is it possible to reduce the depth? Can we compute the addition of two binary ...
Anonymous's user avatar
  • 4,001
21 votes
2 answers
914 views

Deterministic communication complexity vs partition number

Background: Consider the usual two-party model of communication complexity where Alice and Bob are given $n$-bit strings $x$ and $y$ and have to compute some Boolean function $f(x,y)$, where $f:\{0,1\}...
Robin Kothari's user avatar
20 votes
4 answers
1k views

Parity and $AC^0$

Parity and $AC^0$ are like inseparable twins. Or so it has seemed for the last 30 years. In the light of Ryan's result, there will be renewed interest in the small classes. Furst Saxe Sipser to Yao ...
V Vinay's user avatar
  • 3,853
20 votes
5 answers
468 views

Reducing space usage of st-connectivity with multiple passes?

Suppose a graph $G$ with $n$ vertices is presented as a stream of $m$ edges, but multiple passes are allowed over the stream. Monika Rauch Henzinger, Prabhakar Raghavan, and Sridar Rajagopalan ...
András Salamon's user avatar
20 votes
1 answer
1k views

How to prove that USTCONN requires logarithmic space?

USTCONN is the problem that requires deciding whether there is a path from the source vertex $s$ to the target vertex $t$ in a graph $G$, where these are all given as part of the input. Omer Reingold ...
András Salamon's user avatar
20 votes
1 answer
436 views

Explain Gurvits's tensor-rank interpretation of Deolalikar's paper

[Note: I believe this question in no way hinges on the correctness or incorrectness of Deolalikar's paper.] On Scott Aaronson's blog Shtetl Optimized, in the discussion about Deolalikar's recent ...
Joshua Grochow's user avatar
19 votes
1 answer
1k views

Most efficient way to convert an $\text{AC}^0$ circuit to a circuit (of any depth) with gate fanout 1

EDIT (Aug 22, 2011): I am further simplifying the question and putting a bounty on the question. Perhaps this simpler question will have an easy answer. I'm also going to strikethrough all the parts ...
Robin Kothari's user avatar
19 votes
0 answers
1k views

Lower bounds on single-source shortest paths in directed graphs

Are there any non-trivial lower bounds on the complexity of single-source shortest paths (SSSP) in a directed graph, where all edges have non-negative edge weights? Can we rule out the possibility of ...
D.W.'s user avatar
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18 votes
2 answers
3k views

Hierarchy theorem for circuit size

I think that a size hierarchy theorem for circuit complexity can be a major breakthrough in the area. Is it an interesting approach to class separation? The motivation for the question is that we ...
AntonioFa's user avatar
  • 445
18 votes
2 answers
1k views

Lower bounds on #SAT?

The problem #SAT is the canonical #P-complete problem. It's a function problem rather than a decision problem. It asks, given a boolean formula $F$ in propositional logic, how many satisfying ...
Giorgio Camerani's user avatar
18 votes
2 answers
1k views

Status on circuit lower bounds for polylog-bounded depth circuits

Bounded depth circuit complexity is one of the main areas of research within circuit complexity theory. This topic has origins in results like "the parity function is not in $AC^{0}$" and "the mod $p$ ...
shen's user avatar
  • 279
18 votes
2 answers
925 views

Lower bounds on Gaussian complexity

Define the Gaussian complexity of an $n \times n$ matrix to be the minimal number of elementary row and column operations required to bring the matrix into upper-triangular form. This is a quantity ...
Moritz's user avatar
  • 1,714
18 votes
2 answers
830 views

Bounds on the size of the smallest NFA for L_k-distinct

Consider the language $L_{k-distinct}$ consisting of all $k$-letter strings over $\Sigma$ such that no two letters are equal: $$ L_{k-distinct} :=\{w = \sigma_1\sigma_2...\sigma_k \mid \forall i\in[k]...
R B's user avatar
  • 9,438
17 votes
2 answers
782 views

Better lower bounds than 3n for non-boolean functions?

Blum's $3n-o(n)$ lower bound is the best known circuit lower bound over the complete basis for an explicit function $f : \{0,1\}^n \to \{0,1\}$, cf. Jukna's answer to this question for related results....
Manu's user avatar
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17 votes
3 answers
927 views

Succinct data structures survey?

Fischer's paper this month reminded me how little I know about the art of succinct data structures, and algorithms to use them. For those that don't know about succinct data structures: Given a ...
Chad Brewbaker's user avatar
17 votes
0 answers
491 views

Can short-distance connectivity be harder than connectivity?

Has anybody seen the following (or similar) question being considered: Can it be easier to determine the presence/absence of $s$-$t$ paths than to determine the presence/absence of short $s$-$t$ ...
Stasys's user avatar
  • 6,685
16 votes
2 answers
1k views

Is there a SETH (Strong Exponential Time Hypothesis) for CSP (Constraint Satisfaction Problem)?

The Constraint Satisfaction Problem I mentioned is similar to CNF-SAT: A variable can take values from some finite domain $D$ where $|D| = d$. A literal of variable $x$ is an expression of the form $x\...
Junqiang Peng's user avatar
16 votes
1 answer
606 views

Do the proofs that permanent is not in uniform $\mathsf{TC^0}$ relativize?

This is a follow up to this question, and is related to this question of Shiva Kinali. It seems that the proofs in these papers (Allender, Caussinus-McKenzie-Therien-Vollmer, Koiran-Perifel) use ...
Kaveh's user avatar
  • 21.5k
16 votes
2 answers
574 views

Number of binary gates needed to compute AND and OR of n input bits simultaneously

What is the minimal number of binary gates needed to compute AND and OR of $n$ input bits simultaneously? The trivial upper bound is $2n-2$. I believe that this is optimal, but how to prove this? The ...
Alexander S. Kulikov's user avatar
16 votes
3 answers
906 views

How can I show a Gap-P problem is outside #P

There are a number of problems in combinatorial representation theory and algebraic geometry for which no positive formula is known. There are several examples I am thinking of, but let me take ...
David E Speyer's user avatar
16 votes
1 answer
477 views

Lower bounds on the size of CFGs for specific finite languages

Consider the following natural question: Given a finite language $L$, what is the smallest context-free grammar generating $L$? We can make the question more interesting by specifying a sequence of ...
Yuval Filmus's user avatar
  • 14.3k
16 votes
1 answer
799 views

Is Dynamic Programming never weaker than Greedy?

In the circuit complexity, we have separations between powers of various circuit models. In the proof complexity, we have separations between powers of various proof systems. But in the algorithmic,...
Stasys's user avatar
  • 6,685
15 votes
3 answers
992 views

Progress on generalized star-height problem?

The (generalized) star height of a language is the minimum nesting of Kleene stars required to represent the language by an extended regular expression. Recall that an extended regular expression over ...
Patrick Papadopulos's user avatar
15 votes
2 answers
564 views

Complexity lower bound: the gap between decision trees and RAMs

I recently discovered a quadratic lower bound on the complexity of a problem in the decision tree model, and I wonder whether this result could be partially generalized to the random access machine ...
Totoro's user avatar
  • 153
15 votes
1 answer
562 views

Any polynomial which is hard to count but easy to decide?

Every monotone arithmetic circuit, i.e. a $\{+,\times\}$-circuit, computes some multivariate polynomial $F(x_1,\ldots,x_n)$ with nonnegative integer coefficients. Given a polynomial $f(x_1,\ldots,x_n)$...
Stasys's user avatar
  • 6,685
15 votes
0 answers
405 views

Set Intersection lower bounds

Consider $S_1, ...,S_n \subseteq [U]$ where size of $U$ is polylogarithmic in $n$. We allow infinite time to pre-process these sets and then ask queries of the form $S_i \cap S_j$ is empty or not. We ...
karmanaut's user avatar
  • 1,177
15 votes
1 answer
439 views

Characterization of read-once formulae over the full binary basis

Background A read-once formula over a set of gates (also called a basis) is a formula in which each input variable appears once. Read-once formulas are commonly studied over the De Morgan basis (...
Robin Kothari's user avatar
14 votes
3 answers
2k views

Lower Bounds for Data Structures

Are results known which rule out the existence of "too-good-to-be-true" data structures? For example: can one add $Split$ and $Join$ functionality to an order maintenance data structure (see Dietz ...
Shaun Harker's user avatar

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