# Questions tagged [np-hardness]

Questions related to NP-hardness and NP-completeness.

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### Problems that are counter-intuitively solvable in practice?

Recently, I went through the painful fun experience of informally explaining the concept of computational complexity to a young talented self-taught programmer, who never took a formal course in ...
864 views

### Is finding Logspace reductions harder than P reductions?

Motivated by Shor's answer related to different notions of NP-completeness, I am looking for a problem that is NP-complete under P reductions but not known to be NP-complete under Logspace reductions (...
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### $NP$-completeness of recognizing the difference of two permutations

Shor stated, in his comment to anonymous moose's answer to this question Can you identify the sum of two permutations in polynomial time?, that it is $NP$-complete to identify the difference of two ...
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### Consensus clustering using set union

I've already posted this question a while ago on MathOverflow, but to the best of my knowledge it is still open, so I'm reposting it here in the hope that someone might have heard of it. Problem ...
1k views

### Problems that are NP-complete under randomized or P/poly reductions.

In this question, we appear to have identified a natural problem that is NP-complete under randomized reductions, but possibly not under deterministic reductions (although this depends on which ...
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### NP complete graph problems about structural properties

(This question is a bit of a "survey".) I'm currently working on a problem where I'm trying to partition the edges of a tournament into two sets, both of which are required to fulfill some structural ...
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### Positive topological ordering, take 3

Suppose we have an n by n matrix. Is it possible to reorder its rows and columns such that we get an upper-triangular matrix? This question is motivated by this problem: Positive topological ordering ...
644 views

### Is it hard to find optimal addition chains?

An addition chain is a sequence of positive integers $(x_1, x_2, \dots, x_n)$ where $x_1 = 1$ and each index $i\ge 2$, we have $x_i = x_j + x_k$ for some indices $1\le j,k < i$. The length of the ...
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### Minimum chordless odd-cycle graph completion: is it NP-hard?

The following interesting problem came up in my research recently: INSTANCE: Graph $G(V, E)$. SOLUTION: A chordless odd-cycle completion, defined as a superset $E'$ of the edge set $E$ so that ...
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### Is feedback vertex set problem is solvable in polynomial time for 3-degree bounded graphs?

Feedback Vertex Set is NP-complete for general graphs. It is known to be NP-complete for degree-8 bounded graphs due to a reduction from vertex cover. The Wikipedia article says that it is poly-time ...
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### Are there known NP-complete problems, neither NP-hard in the strong sense nor having pseudopolynomial algorithm?

In their paper (p. 503) Garey and Johnson remark: ... there could exist an NP-complete problem which is neither NP-complete in the strong sense nor solvable by a pseudo-polynomial time algorithm ......
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### Why is it important to prove that a problem is NP-complete?

Am I correct in understanding that proving a problem NP complete is a research success? If so why?
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### “All-different hypergraph coloring” - known problem?

I am interested in the following problem: Given a set X and subsets X_1, ..., X_n of X, find a coloring of the elements of X with k colors such that the elements in each X_i are all differently ...
794 views

### Co-NP-completeness of minimal TSP tour?

This problem came out of my recent blog post, suppose you are given a TSP tour, is it co-NP-complete to determine if it is a minimal one? More precisely is the following problem NP-complete: ...
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### The motivation for using Karp-reductions in the theory of $\mathcal{NP}$-completeness

The notion of polynomial time reductions (Cook reductions) is an abstraction of a very intuitive concept: efficiently solving a problem by using an algorithm for a different problem. However, in the ...
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### Complexity of the densest $k$-subgraph problem on planar graphs

In the densest $k$-subgraph problem, one is given an undirected graph $G$ and wants to find a set of vertices $N$ with $|N| = k$ such that the number of edges in the subgraph of $G$ induced by $N$ is ...
912 views

### Complexity of finding a second solution given a correct solution to an NP-complete problem

I'm looking to figure out whether there are any general results about or examples concerning the NP-completeness of the problem of finding a second solution to an NP-complete problem. More precisely, ...
2k views

### Can strong NP-hardness really be shown using plain polytime reductions?

I recently read a proof that intended to show that a problem was strongly NP-hard, simply by reducing to it (in polynomial time) from a strongly NP-hard problem. This didn’t make any sense to me. I ...
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### What is the complexity of this edge coloring problem?

Recently, I have encountered the following variant of edge coloring. Given a connected undirected graph, find a coloring of the edges that uses the maximum number of colors while also satisfying ...
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### H-free cut problem

Suppose you are given a connected, simple, undirected graph H. The H-free cut problem is defined as follows: Given a simple, undirected graph G, is there a cut (partition of vertices into two ...
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### Complexity of interval cover problem

Consider the following problem $Q$: We are given an integer $n$, and $k$ intervals $[l_i,r_i]$ with $1\leq l_i\leq r_i\leq 2n$. We are also given $2n$ integers $d_1,…,d_{2n}\geq 0$. The task is to ...
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### Graph problems which are NP-Complete on directed graphs but polynomial on undirected graphs

I'm looking for problems which are known to be NPC for directed graphs but has a polynomial algorithm for undirected graphs. I've seen the question regarding the other way around here “Directed” ...
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### Is intersection of $k \ge 3$ graphic matroids in P?

It is known that intersection of three general matroids is NP-hard (source), which is done via reduction from Hamiltonian cycle. The reduction uses one graphic matroid and two connectivity matroids. ...
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### Natural candidates for the hierarchy inside NPI

Let's assume that $\mathsf{P} \neq \mathsf{NP}$. $\mathsf{NPI}$ is the class of problems in $\mathsf{NP}$ which are neither in $\mathsf{P}$ nor in $\mathsf{NP}$-hard. You can find a list of problems ...
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### Password hashing using NP complete problems

Commonly used password hashing algorithms work like this today: Salt the password and feed it into a KDF. For example, using PBKDF2-HMAC-SHA1, the password hashing process is ...
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### What is the complexity of rectangle packing when rotations are allowed?

In the rectangle packing problem, one is given a set of rectangles $\{r_1,\dots,r_n\}$ and bounding rectangle $R$. The task is to find a placement of $r_1,\ldots,r_n$ inside $R$ such that none of ...
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### Completeness and Context-Sensitive Languages.

I'm interested in two questions regarding context-sensitive languages (CSL) and completeness: Is there a notion of completeness for CSL, and which languages are complete? Are there natural CSL that ...
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### What is the complexity of this graph problem?

Given a simple undirected graph $G$, find a subset $A\neq \emptyset$ of vertices, such that for any vertex $x\in A$ at least half of the neighbors of $x$ are also in $A$, and the size of $A$ is ...
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### Ranking the Difficulty of NP Hard Problems in Practice

This question is tightly related to another post: Phase Transitions in NP Hard Problems but it is somewhat different. While that question is about the hardness of particular instances of NP hard ...
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### Bob's Sale (reordering of pairs with constraints to minimize sum of products)

I've asked this question on Stack Overflow a while ago: Problem: Bob's sale. Someone suggested posting the question here as well. Someone has already asked a question related to this problem here - ...
363 views

### Hitting set of pairwise intersecting families

A hitting set of a family $\mathcal{S} = \{S_1, \dots, S_n\}$ is a subset $H$ of $\bigcup_{i=1}^{n} S_i$ such that $H \cap S_i \ne \emptyset$ for $1 \le i \le n$. The problem to find a minimum hitting ...
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### Validity of exponentiation in a polynomial time reduction

I asked this question 10 days ago on cs.stackexchange here but I didn'y have any answer. In a very famous paper (in the networking community), Wang & Crowcroft present some $\mathsf{NP}$-...
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### Can one efficiently uniformly sample a neighbor of a vertex in the graph of a polytope?

I have a polytope $P$ defined by $\{ x : Ax \leq b, x \geq 0\}$ . Question: Given a vertex $v$ of $P$, is there a polynomial time algorithm to uniformly sample from the neighbors of $v$ in the graph ...
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### Is the following problem NP hard?

Consider a collection of sets $F=\{F_1,F_2,\dotsc,F_n\}$ over a base set $U=\{e_1,e_2,\dotsc,e_n\}$ where $|F_i|$ $\ll$ $n$ and $e_i \in F_i$, and let $k$ be a positive integer. The goal is to find ...
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### Exact Algorithms for r-Dominating Set on Bounded Treewidth Graphs

Given a graph, $G = (V, E)$, I want to find an optimal $r$-domination for $G$. That is, I want a subset $S$ of $V$ such that all vertices in $G$ are at a distance of at most $r$ from some vertex in $S$...
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### How can a problem be in NP, be NP-hard and not NP-complete?

For the longest time I have thought that a problem was NP-complete if it is both (1) NP-hard and (2) is in NP. However, in the famous paper "The ellipsoid method and its consequences in ...
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### Sampling a uniformly random satisfying assignment

Problem: Given $\phi : \{0,1\}^n \to \{0,1\}$ represented by a boolean circuit, generate a uniformly random $x \in \{0,1\}^n$ such that $\phi(x)=1$ (or output $\perp$ if no such $x$ exists). Clearly ...
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### What is the following variation on Set Cover known as?

What is the following variation on set cover known as? Given a set S, a collection C of subsets of S and a positive integer K, do there exist K sets in C such that every pair of elements of S lies in ...
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### NP-Complete problems that admit an efficient algorithm under the promise of a unique solution

I was recently reading a very nice paper by Valiant and Vazirani which shows that if $\mathbf{NP \neq RP}$, then there can not be an efficient algorithm to solve SAT even under the promise that it is ...
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### What is the minimum required depth of reductions for NP-hardness of SAT?

As everyone knows, SAT is complete for $\mathsf{NP}$ w.r.t. polynomial-time many-one reductions. It is still complete w.r.t. $\mathsf{AC^0}$ many-one reductions. My questions is what is the minimum ...
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### Integer relation detection for Subset Sum or NPP?

Is there a way to encode an instance of Subset Sum or the Number Partition Problem so that a (small) solution to an integer relation yields an answer? If not definitely, then in some probabilistic ...
What is the complexity of the following problem? Input: $H$ a Hamiltonian path in $K_n$ $R \subseteq [n]^2$ a subset of pairs of vertices a positive integer $k$ Query: is there a matching $M$ such ...
I have a little conjecture that if you could perform matrix multiplication (or solve 3-clique) in $O(n^2 \log(n))$ time, then you could solve CNF-SAT in $O(2^{(1-\epsilon)n})$ time. In other words, ...