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Proof verification and hardness of approximation problems
 IN PROC. 33RD ANN. IEEE SYMP. ON FOUND. OF COMP. SCI
, 1992
"... We show that every language in NP has a probablistic verifier that checks membership proofs for it using logarithmic number of random bits and by examining a constant number of bits in the proof. If a string is in the language, then there exists a proof such that the verifier accepts with probabilit ..."
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Cited by 726 (46 self)
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We show that every language in NP has a probablistic verifier that checks membership proofs for it using logarithmic number of random bits and by examining a constant number of bits in the proof. If a string is in the language, then there exists a proof such that the verifier accepts with probability 1 (i.e., for every choice of its random string). For strings not in the language, the verifier rejects every provided “proof " with probability at least 1/2. Our result builds upon and improves a recent result of Arora and Safra [6] whose verifiers examine a nonconstant number of bits in the proof (though this number is a very slowly growing function of the input length). As a consequence we prove that no MAX SNPhard problem has a polynomial time approximation scheme, unless NP=P. The class MAX SNP was defined by Papadimitriou and Yannakakis [82] and hard problems for this class include vertex cover, maximum satisfiability, maximum cut, metric TSP, Steiner trees and shortest superstring. We also improve upon the clique hardness results of Feige, Goldwasser, Lovász, Safra and Szegedy [42], and Arora and Safra [6] and shows that there exists a positive ɛ such that approximating the maximum clique size in an Nvertex graph to within a factor of N ɛ is NPhard.
Reachability is harder for directed than for undirected finite graphs
 Journal of Symbolic Logic
, 1990
"... Abstract. Although it is known that reachability in undirected finite graphs can be expressed by an existential monadic secondorder sentence, our main result is that this is not the case for directed finite graphs (even in the presence of certain “builtin ” relations, such as the successor relatio ..."
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Cited by 71 (8 self)
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Abstract. Although it is known that reachability in undirected finite graphs can be expressed by an existential monadic secondorder sentence, our main result is that this is not the case for directed finite graphs (even in the presence of certain “builtin ” relations, such as the successor relation). The proof makes use of EhrenfeuchtFrai’sse games, along with probabilistic arguments. However, we show that for directed finite graphs with degree at most k, reachability is expressible by an existential monadic secondorder sentence. $1. Introduction. If s and t denote distinguished points in a directed (resp. undirected) graph, then we say that a graph is (s, t)connected if there is a directed (undirected) path from s to t. We sometimes refer to the problem of deciding whether a given directed (undirected) graph with two given points sand t is (s, t)connected as the directed (undirected) reachability problem.
Efficient Checking of Polynomials and Proofs and the Hardness of Approximation Problems
, 1992
"... The definition of the class NP [Coo71, Lev73] highlights the problem of verification of proofs as one of central interest to theoretical computer science. Recent efforts have shown that the efficiency of the verification can be greatly improved by allowing the verifier access to random bits and acce ..."
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Cited by 70 (9 self)
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The definition of the class NP [Coo71, Lev73] highlights the problem of verification of proofs as one of central interest to theoretical computer science. Recent efforts have shown that the efficiency of the verification can be greatly improved by allowing the verifier access to random bits and accepting probabilistic guarantees from the verifier [BFL91, BFLS91, FGL + 91, AS92]. We improve upon the efficiency of the proof systems developed above and obtain proofs which can be verified probabilistically by examining only a constant number of (randomly chosen) bits of the proof. The efficiently verifiable proofs constructed here rely on the structural properties of lowdegree polynomials. We explore the properties of these functions by examining some simple and basic questions about them. We consider questions of the form: • (testing) Given an oracle for a function f, is f close to a lowdegree polynomial? • (correcting) Let f be close to a lowdegree polynomial g, is it possible to efficiently reconstruct the value of g on any given input using an oracle for f? 2 The questions described above have been raised before in the context of coding theory as the problems of errordetecting and errorcorrecting of codes. More recently
Infinitary Logics and 01 Laws
 Information and Computation
, 1992
"... We investigate the in nitary logic L 1! , in which sentences may have arbitrary disjunctions and conjunctions, but they involve only a nite number of distinct variables. We show that various xpoint logics can be viewed as fragments of L 1! , and we describe a gametheoretic characterizat ..."
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Cited by 42 (4 self)
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We investigate the in nitary logic L 1! , in which sentences may have arbitrary disjunctions and conjunctions, but they involve only a nite number of distinct variables. We show that various xpoint logics can be viewed as fragments of L 1! , and we describe a gametheoretic characterization of the expressive power of the logic. Finally, we study asymptotic probabilities of properties 1! on nite structures. We show that the 01 law holds for L 1! , i.e., the asymptotic probability of every sentence in this logic exists and is equal to either 0 or 1. This result subsumes earlier work on asymptotic probabilities for various xpoint logics and reveals the boundary of 01 laws for in nitary logics.
Logical Definability of NP Optimization Problems
 Information and Computation
, 1994
"... : We investigate here NP optimization problems from a logical definability standpoint. We show that the class of optimization problems whose optimum is definable using firstorder formulae coincides with the class of polynomially bounded NP optimization problems on finite structures. After this, we ..."
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Cited by 41 (2 self)
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: We investigate here NP optimization problems from a logical definability standpoint. We show that the class of optimization problems whose optimum is definable using firstorder formulae coincides with the class of polynomially bounded NP optimization problems on finite structures. After this, we analyze the relative expressive power of various classes of optimization problems that arise in this framework. Some of our results show that logical definability has different implications for NP maximization problems than it has for NP minimization problems, in terms of both expressive power and approximation properties. To appear in Information and Computation. Research partially supported by NSF Grants CCR8905038 and CCR9108631. y email addresses: kolaitis@cse.ucsc.edu, thakur@cse.ucsc.edu z supersedes Technical report UCSCCRL9048 1 Introduction and Summary of Results It is well known that optimization problems had a major influence on the development of the theory of NPco...
FiniteModel Theory  A Personal Perspective
 Theoretical Computer Science
, 1993
"... Finitemodel theory is a study of the logical properties of finite mathematical structures. This paper is a very personalized view of finitemodel theory, where the author focuses on his own personal history, and results and problems of interest to him, especially those springing from work in his Ph ..."
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Cited by 20 (0 self)
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Finitemodel theory is a study of the logical properties of finite mathematical structures. This paper is a very personalized view of finitemodel theory, where the author focuses on his own personal history, and results and problems of interest to him, especially those springing from work in his Ph.D. thesis. Among the topics discussed are:
Higher Order Logic
 In Handbook of Logic in Artificial Intelligence and Logic Programming
, 1994
"... Contents 1 Introduction : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : 2 2 The expressive power of second order Logic : : : : : : : : : : : 3 2.1 The language of second order logic : : : : : : : : : : : : : 3 2.2 Expressing size : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : 4 2.3 Definin ..."
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Cited by 18 (0 self)
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Contents 1 Introduction : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : 2 2 The expressive power of second order Logic : : : : : : : : : : : 3 2.1 The language of second order logic : : : : : : : : : : : : : 3 2.2 Expressing size : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : 4 2.3 Defining data types : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : 6 2.4 Describing processes : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : 8 2.5 Expressing convergence using second order validity : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : 9 2.6 Truth definitions: the analytical hierarchy : : : : : : : : 10 2.7 Inductive definitions : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : 13 3 Canonical semantics of higher order logic : : : : : : : : : : : : 15 3.1 Tarskian semantics of second order logic : : : : : : : : : 15 3.2 Function and re
Transparent Proofs and Limits to Approximation
, 1994
"... We survey a major collective accomplishment of the theoretical computer science community on efficiently verifiable proofs. Informally, a formal proof is transparent (or holographic) if it can be verified with large confidence by a small number of spotchecks. Recent work by a large group of researc ..."
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Cited by 17 (0 self)
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We survey a major collective accomplishment of the theoretical computer science community on efficiently verifiable proofs. Informally, a formal proof is transparent (or holographic) if it can be verified with large confidence by a small number of spotchecks. Recent work by a large group of researchers has shown that this seemingly paradoxical concept can be formalized and is feasible in a remarkably strong sense; every formal proof in ZF, say, can be rewritten in transparent format (proving the same theorem in a different proof system) without increasing the length of the proof by too much. This result in turn has surprising implications for the intractability of approximate solutions of a wide range of discrete optimization problems, extending the pessimistic predictions of the PNP theory to approximate solvability. We discuss the main results on transparent proofs and their implications to discrete optimization. We give an account of several links between the two subjects as well ...
Linear datalog and bounded path duality of relational structures
 Logical Methods in Computer Science
"... Abstract. In this paper we systematically investigate the connections between logics with a finite number of variables, structures of bounded pathwidth, and linear Datalog Programs. We prove that, in the context of Constraint Satisfaction Problems, all these concepts correspond to different mathemat ..."
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Cited by 13 (2 self)
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Abstract. In this paper we systematically investigate the connections between logics with a finite number of variables, structures of bounded pathwidth, and linear Datalog Programs. We prove that, in the context of Constraint Satisfaction Problems, all these concepts correspond to different mathematical embodiments of a unique robust notion that we call bounded path duality. We also study the computational complexity implications of the notion of bounded path duality. We show that every constraint satisfaction problem CSP(B) with bounded path duality is solvable in NL and that this notion explains in a uniform way all families of CSPs known to be in NL. Finally, we use the results developed in the paper to identify new problems in NL. 1.
Constraint Satisfaction Problems in NonDeterministic Logarithmic Space
"... We study which constraint satisfaction problems (CSPs) are solvable in NL. In particular, we identify a general condition called bounded path duality, that explains all the families of CSPs previously known to be in NL. Bounded path duality ..."
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Cited by 11 (2 self)
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We study which constraint satisfaction problems (CSPs) are solvable in NL. In particular, we identify a general condition called bounded path duality, that explains all the families of CSPs previously known to be in NL. Bounded path duality