## Computational metric embeddings

##### Author(s)

Sidiropoulos, Anastasios
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##### Other Contributors

Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Dept. of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science.

##### Advisor

Piotr Indyk.

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We study the problem of computing a low-distortion embedding between two metric spaces. More precisely given an input metric space M we are interested in computing in polynomial time an embedding into a host space M' with minimum multiplicative distortion. This problem arises naturally in many applications, including geometric optimization, visualization, multi-dimensional scaling, network spanners, and the computation of phylogenetic trees. We focus on the case where the host space is either a euclidean space of constant dimension such as the line and the plane, or a graph metric of simple topological structure such as a tree. For Euclidean spaces, we present the following upper bounds. We give an approximation algorithm that, given a metric space that embeds into R1 with distortion c, computes an embedding with distortion c(1) [delta]3/4 (A denotes the ratio of the maximum over the minimum distance). For higher-dimensional spaces, we obtain an algorithm which, for any fixed d > 2, given an ultrametric that embeds into Rd with distortion c, computes an embedding with distortion co(1). We also present an algorithm achieving distortion c logo(1) [delta] for the same problem. We complement the above upper bounds by proving hardness of computing optimal, or near-optimal embeddings. When the input space is an ultrametric, we show that it is NP-hard to compute an optimal embedding into R2 under the ... norm. Moreover, we prove that for any fixed d > 2, it is NP-hard to approximate the minimum distortion embedding of an n-point metric space into Rd within a factor of Q(n1/(17d)). Finally, we consider the problem of embedding into tree metrics. We give a 0(1)approximation algorithm for the case where the input is the shortest-path metric of an unweighted graph. (cont.) For general metric spaces, we present an algorithm which, given an n-point metric that embeds into a tree with distortion c, computes an embedding with distortion (clog n)o ... . By composing this algorithm with an algorithm for embedding trees into R1, we obtain an improved algorithm for embedding general metric spaces into R1.

##### Description

Thesis (Ph. D.)--Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Dept. of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, 2008. Includes bibliographical references (p. 141-145).

##### Date issued

2008##### Department

Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Dept. of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science.##### Publisher

Massachusetts Institute of Technology

##### Keywords

Electrical Engineering and Computer Science.