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117
A general approximation technique for constrained forest problems
 SIAM J. COMPUT.
, 1995
"... We present a general approximation technique for a large class of graph problems. Our technique mostly applies to problems of covering, at minimum cost, the vertices of a graph with trees, cycles, or paths satisfying certain requirements. In particular, many basic combinatorial optimization proble ..."
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Cited by 423 (21 self)
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We present a general approximation technique for a large class of graph problems. Our technique mostly applies to problems of covering, at minimum cost, the vertices of a graph with trees, cycles, or paths satisfying certain requirements. In particular, many basic combinatorial optimization problems fit in this framework, including the shortest path, minimumcost spanning tree, minimumweight perfect matching, traveling salesman, and Steiner tree problems. Our technique produces approximation algorithms that run in O(n log n) time and come within a factor of 2 of optimal for most of these problems. For instance, we obtain a 2approximation algorithm for the minimumweight perfect matching problem under the triangle inequality. Our running time of O(n log n) time compares favorably with the best strongly polynomial exact algorithms running in O(n 3) time for dense graphs. A similar result is obtained for the 2matching problem and its variants. We also derive the first approximation algorithms for many NPcomplete problems, including the nonfixed pointtopoint connection problem, the exact path partitioning problem, and complex locationdesign problems. Moreover, for the prizecollecting traveling salesman or Steiner tree problems, we obtain 2approximation algorithms, therefore improving the previously bestknown performance guarantees of 2.5 and 3, respectively [Math. Programming, 59 (1993), pp. 413420].
Polynomial time approximation schemes for Euclidean TSP and other geometric problems
 In Proceedings of the 37th IEEE Symposium on Foundations of Computer Science (FOCS’96
, 1996
"... Abstract. We present a polynomial time approximation scheme for Euclidean TSP in fixed dimensions. For every fixed c � 1 and given any n nodes in � 2, a randomized version of the scheme finds a (1 � 1/c)approximation to the optimum traveling salesman tour in O(n(log n) O(c) ) time. When the nodes a ..."
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Cited by 404 (3 self)
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Abstract. We present a polynomial time approximation scheme for Euclidean TSP in fixed dimensions. For every fixed c � 1 and given any n nodes in � 2, a randomized version of the scheme finds a (1 � 1/c)approximation to the optimum traveling salesman tour in O(n(log n) O(c) ) time. When the nodes are in � d, the running time increases to O(n(log n) (O(�dc))d�1). For every fixed c, d the running time is n � poly(log n), that is nearly linear in n. The algorithm can be derandomized, but this increases the running time by a factor O(n d). The previous best approximation algorithm for the problem (due to Christofides) achieves a 3/2approximation in polynomial time. We also give similar approximation schemes for some other NPhard Euclidean problems: Minimum Steiner Tree, kTSP, and kMST. (The running times of the algorithm for kTSP and kMST involve an additional multiplicative factor k.) The previous best approximation algorithms for all these problems achieved a constantfactor approximation. We also give efficient approximation schemes for Euclidean MinCost Matching, a problem that can be solved exactly in polynomial time. All our algorithms also work, with almost no modification, when distance is measured using any geometric norm (such as �p for p � 1 or other Minkowski norms). They also have simple parallel (i.e., NC) implementations.
Improved Steiner Tree Approximation in Graphs
, 2000
"... The Steiner tree problem in weighted graphs seeks a minimum weight connected subgraph containing a given subset of the vertices (terminals). We present a new polynomialtime heuristic with an approximation ratio approaching 1 + 2 1:55, which improves upon the previously bestknown approximation ..."
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Cited by 225 (6 self)
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The Steiner tree problem in weighted graphs seeks a minimum weight connected subgraph containing a given subset of the vertices (terminals). We present a new polynomialtime heuristic with an approximation ratio approaching 1 + 2 1:55, which improves upon the previously bestknown approximation algorithm of [10] with performance ratio 1:59.
Geometric Shortest Paths and Network Optimization
 Handbook of Computational Geometry
, 1998
"... Introduction A natural and wellstudied problem in algorithmic graph theory and network optimization is that of computing a "shortest path" between two nodes, s and t, in a graph whose edges have "weights" associated with them, and we consider the "length" of a path to ..."
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Cited by 196 (15 self)
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Introduction A natural and wellstudied problem in algorithmic graph theory and network optimization is that of computing a "shortest path" between two nodes, s and t, in a graph whose edges have "weights" associated with them, and we consider the "length" of a path to be the sum of the weights of the edges that comprise it. Efficient algorithms are well known for this problem, as briefly summarized below. The shortest path problem takes on a new dimension when considered in a geometric domain. In contrast to graphs, where the encoding of edges is explicit, a geometric instance of a shortest path problem is usually specified by giving geometric objects that implicitly encode the graph and its edge weights. Our goal in devising efficient geometric algorithms is generally to avoid explicit construction of the entire underlying graph, since the full induced graph may be very large (even exponential in the input size, or infinite). Computing an optimal
Approximation Algorithms for Directed Steiner Problems
 Journal of Algorithms
, 1998
"... We give the first nontrivial approximation algorithms for the Steiner tree problem and the generalized Steiner network problem on general directed graphs. These problems have several applications in network design and multicast routing. For both problems, the best ratios known before our work we ..."
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Cited by 177 (8 self)
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We give the first nontrivial approximation algorithms for the Steiner tree problem and the generalized Steiner network problem on general directed graphs. These problems have several applications in network design and multicast routing. For both problems, the best ratios known before our work were the trivial O(k)approximations. For the directed Steiner tree problem, we design a family of algorithms that achieves an approximation ratio of i(i \Gamma 1)k 1=i in time O(n i k 2i ) for any fixed i ? 1, where k is the number of terminals. Thus, an O(k ffl ) approximation ratio can be achieved in polynomial time for any fixed ffl ? 0. Setting i = log k, we obtain an O(log 2 k) approximation ratio in quasipolynomial time. For the directed generalized Steiner network problem, we give an algorithm that achieves an approximation ratio of O(k 2=3 log 1=3 k), where k is the number of pairs of vertices that are to be connected. Related problems including the group Steiner...
THE PRIMALDUAL METHOD FOR APPROXIMATION ALGORITHMS AND ITS APPLICATION TO NETWORK DESIGN PROBLEMS
"... The primaldual method is a standard tool in the design of algorithms for combinatorial optimization problems. This chapter shows how the primaldual method can be modified to provide good approximation algorithms for a wide variety of NPhard problems. We concentrate on results from recent researc ..."
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Cited by 143 (5 self)
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The primaldual method is a standard tool in the design of algorithms for combinatorial optimization problems. This chapter shows how the primaldual method can be modified to provide good approximation algorithms for a wide variety of NPhard problems. We concentrate on results from recent research applying the primaldual method to problems in network design.
Biconnectivity Approximations and Graph Carvings
, 1994
"... A spanning tree in a graph is the smallest connected spanning subgraph. Given a graph, how does one find the smallest (i.e., least number of edges) 2connected spanning subgraph (connectivity refers to both edge and vertex connectivity, if not specified) ? Unfortunately, the problem is known to be ..."
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Cited by 97 (5 self)
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A spanning tree in a graph is the smallest connected spanning subgraph. Given a graph, how does one find the smallest (i.e., least number of edges) 2connected spanning subgraph (connectivity refers to both edge and vertex connectivity, if not specified) ? Unfortunately, the problem is known to be NP hard. We consider the problem of finding a better approximation to the smallest 2connected subgraph, by an efficient algorithm. For 2edge connectivity our algorithm guarantees a solution that is no more than 3 2 times the optimal. For 2vertex connectivity our algorithm guarantees a solution that is no more than 5 3 times the optimal. The previous best approximation factor is 2 for each of these problems. The new algorithms (and their analyses) depend upon a structure called a carving of a graph, which is of independent interest. We show that approximating the optimal solution to within an additive constant is NP hard as well. We also consider the case where the graph has edge weigh...
Tighter Bounds for Graph Steiner Tree Approximation
 SIAM Journal on Discrete Mathematics
, 2005
"... Abstract. The classical Steiner tree problem in weighted graphs seeks a minimum weight connected subgraph containing a given subset of the vertices (terminals). We present a new polynomialln 3 time heuristic that achieves a bestknown approximation ratio of 1 + ≈ 1.55 for general graphs 2 and best ..."
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Cited by 85 (6 self)
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Abstract. The classical Steiner tree problem in weighted graphs seeks a minimum weight connected subgraph containing a given subset of the vertices (terminals). We present a new polynomialln 3 time heuristic that achieves a bestknown approximation ratio of 1 + ≈ 1.55 for general graphs 2 and bestknown approximation ratios of ≈ 1.28 for both quasibipartite graphs (i.e., where no two nonterminals are adjacent) and complete graphs with edge weights 1 and 2. Our method is considerably simpler and easier to implement than previous approaches. We also prove the first known nontrivial performance bound (1.5 · OPT) for the iterated 1Steiner heuristic of Kahng and Robins in quasibipartite graphs.
Multicast Tree Generation in Networks with Asymmetric Links
 IEEE/ACM Transactions on Networking
, 1996
"... We formulate the problem of multicast tree generation as one of computing a directed Steiner tree of minimal cost. In this context, we present a polynomialtime algorithm that provides for tradeoff selection, using a single parameter , between the treecost (Steiner cost) and the runtime efficiency ..."
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Cited by 82 (0 self)
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We formulate the problem of multicast tree generation as one of computing a directed Steiner tree of minimal cost. In this context, we present a polynomialtime algorithm that provides for tradeoff selection, using a single parameter , between the treecost (Steiner cost) and the runtime efficiency. Further, the same algorithm may be used for delay optimization or treecost minimization simply by configuring the value of appropriately. We present theoretical and experimental analysis characterizing the problem and the performance of our algorithm. Theoretically, we (1) show that it is highly unlikely that there exists a polynomialtime algorithm with a performance guarantee of constant times optimum cost, (2) introduce metrics for measuring the asymmetry of graphs, and (3) show that the worstcase cost of the tree produced by our algorithm is at most twice the optimum cost times the asymmetry, for two of these asymmetry metrics. For graphs with bounded asymmetry, this gives constant ...
An Improved LPbased Approximation for Steiner Tree
, 2009
"... The Steiner tree problem is one of the most fundamentalhard problems: given a weighted undirected graph and a subset of terminal nodes, find a minimum weight tree spanning the terminals. In a sequence of papers, the approximation ratio for this problem was improved from to the current best���[Robin ..."
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Cited by 64 (7 self)
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The Steiner tree problem is one of the most fundamentalhard problems: given a weighted undirected graph and a subset of terminal nodes, find a minimum weight tree spanning the terminals. In a sequence of papers, the approximation ratio for this problem was improved from to the current best���[Robins,ZelikovskySIDMA’05]. All these algorithms are purely combinatorial. A longstanding open problem is whether there is an LPrelaxation for Steiner tree with integrality gap smaller than [Vazirani,RajagopalanSODA’99]. In this paper we improve the approximation factor for Steiner tree, developing an LPbased approximation a� algorithm. Our algorithm is based on a, seemingly novel, iterative randomized rounding technique. We consider a directedcomponent cut relaxation for the�restricted Steiner tree problem. We sample one of these components with probability proportional to the value of the associated variable in the optimal fractional solution and contract it. We iterate this process for a proper number of times and finally output the sampled components together