Randomised enumeration of small witnesses using a decision oracle

Meeks, K. (2019) Randomised enumeration of small witnesses using a decision oracle. Algorithmica, 81(2), pp. 519-540. (doi:10.1007/s00453-018-0404-y)

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Abstract

Many combinatorial problems involve determining whether a universe of n elements contains a witness consisting of k elements which have some specified property. In this paper we investigate the relationship between the decision and enumeration versions of such problems: efficient methods are known for transforming a decision algorithm into a search procedure that finds a single witness, but even finding a second witness is not so straightforward in general. We show that, if the decision version of the problem can be solved in time f(k)⋅poly(n) , there is a randomised algorithm which enumerates all witnesses in time ek+o(k)⋅f(k)⋅poly(n)⋅N , where N is the total number of witnesses. If the decision version of the problem is solved by a randomised algorithm which may return false negatives, then the same method allows us to output a list of witnesses in which any given witness will be included with high probability. The enumeration algorithm also gives rise to an efficient algorithm to count the total number of witnesses when this number is small.

Item Type:Articles
Status:Published
Refereed:Yes
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Meeks, Dr Kitty
Authors: Meeks, K.
College/School:College of Science and Engineering > School of Computing Science
Journal Name:Algorithmica
Publisher:Springer
ISSN:0178-4617
ISSN (Online):1432-0541
Published Online:16 January 2018
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2018 The Authors
First Published:First published in Algorithmica 81:519–540
Publisher Policy:Reproduced under a Creative Commons License

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