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Robert Gordon University

1.
Christie, Lee A.
The role of Walsh structure and ordinal linkage in the optimisation of *pseudo*-*Boolean* *functions* under monotonicity invariance.

Degree: PhD, 2016, Robert Gordon University

URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10059/1567

Optimisation heuristics rely on implicit or explicit assumptions about the structure of the black-box fitness function they optimise. A review of the literature shows that understanding of structure and linkage is helpful to the design and analysis of heuristics. The aim of this thesis is to investigate the role that problem structure plays in heuristic optimisation. Many heuristics use ordinal operators; which are those that are invariant under monotonic transformations of the fitness function. In this thesis we develop a classification of pseudo-Boolean functions based on rank-invariance. This approach classifies functions which are monotonic transformations of one another as equivalent, and so partitions an infinite set of functions into a finite set of classes. Reasoning about heuristics composed of ordinal operators is, by construction, invariant over these classes. We perform a complete analysis of 2-bit and 3-bit pseudo-Boolean functions. We use Walsh analysis to define concepts of necessary, unnecessary, and conditionally necessary interactions, and of Walsh families. This helps to make precise some existing ideas in the literature such as benign interactions. Many algorithms are invariant under the classes we define, which allows us to examine the difficulty of pseudo-Boolean functions in terms of function classes. We analyse a range of ordinal selection operators for an EDA. Using a concept of directed ordinal linkage, we define precedence networks and precedence profiles to represent key algorithmic steps and their interdependency in terms of problem structure. The precedence profiles provide a measure of problem difficulty. This corresponds to problem difficulty and algorithmic steps for optimisation. This work develops insight into the relationship between function structure and problem difficulty for optimisation, which may be used to direct the development of novel algorithms. Concepts of structure are also used to construct easy and hard problems for a hill-climber.

Subjects/Keywords: 006.3; Heuristics; Pseudo-Boolean functions; Walsh analysis; Problem structures

Record Details Similar Records

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APA · Chicago · MLA · Vancouver · CSE | Export to Zotero / EndNote / Reference Manager

APA (6^{th} Edition):

Christie, L. A. (2016). The role of Walsh structure and ordinal linkage in the optimisation of pseudo-Boolean functions under monotonicity invariance. (Doctoral Dissertation). Robert Gordon University. Retrieved from http://hdl.handle.net/10059/1567

Chicago Manual of Style (16^{th} Edition):

Christie, Lee A. “The role of Walsh structure and ordinal linkage in the optimisation of pseudo-Boolean functions under monotonicity invariance.” 2016. Doctoral Dissertation, Robert Gordon University. Accessed February 28, 2021. http://hdl.handle.net/10059/1567.

MLA Handbook (7^{th} Edition):

Christie, Lee A. “The role of Walsh structure and ordinal linkage in the optimisation of pseudo-Boolean functions under monotonicity invariance.” 2016. Web. 28 Feb 2021.

Vancouver:

Christie LA. The role of Walsh structure and ordinal linkage in the optimisation of pseudo-Boolean functions under monotonicity invariance. [Internet] [Doctoral dissertation]. Robert Gordon University; 2016. [cited 2021 Feb 28]. Available from: http://hdl.handle.net/10059/1567.

Council of Science Editors:

Christie LA. The role of Walsh structure and ordinal linkage in the optimisation of pseudo-Boolean functions under monotonicity invariance. [Doctoral Dissertation]. Robert Gordon University; 2016. Available from: http://hdl.handle.net/10059/1567

Colorado State University

2. Sutton, Andrew M. Analysis of combinatorial search spaces for a class of NP-hard problems, An.

Degree: PhD, Computer Science, 2011, Colorado State University

URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10217/50161

Given a finite but very large set of states X and a real-valued objective function ƒ defined on X, combinatorial optimization refers to the problem of finding elements of X that maximize (or minimize) ƒ. Many combinatorial search algorithms employ some perturbation operator to hill-climb in the search space. Such perturbative local search algorithms are state of the art for many classes of NP-hard combinatorial optimization problems such as maximum k-satisfiability, scheduling, and problems of graph theory. In this thesis we analyze combinatorial search spaces by expanding the objective function into a (sparse) series of basis functions. While most analyses of the distribution of function values in the search space must rely on empirical sampling, the basis function expansion allows us to directly study the distribution of function values across regions of states for combinatorial problems without the need for sampling. We concentrate on objective functions that can be expressed as bounded pseudo-Boolean functions which are NP-hard to solve in general. We use the basis expansion to construct a polynomial-time algorithm for exactly computing constant-degree moments of the objective function ƒ over arbitrarily large regions of the search space. On functions with restricted codomains, these moments are related to the true distribution by a system of linear equations. Given low moments supplied by our algorithm, we construct bounds of the true distribution of ƒ over regions of the space using a linear programming approach. A straightforward relaxation allows us to efficiently approximate the distribution and hence quickly estimate the count of states in a given region that have certain values under the objective function. The analysis is also useful for characterizing properties of specific combinatorial problems. For instance, by connecting search space analysis to the theory of inapproximability, we prove that the bound specified by Grover's maximum principle for the Max-Ek-Lin-2 problem is sharp. Moreover, we use the framework to prove certain configurations are forbidden in regions of the Max-3-Sat search space, supplying the first theoretical confirmation of empirical results by others. Finally, we show that theoretical results can be used to drive the design of algorithms in a principled manner by using the search space analysis developed in this thesis in algorithmic applications. First, information obtained from our moment retrieving algorithm can be used to direct a hill-climbing search across plateaus in the Max-k-Sat search space. Second, the analysis can be used to control the mutation rate on a (1+1) evolutionary algorithm on bounded pseudo-Boolean functions so that the offspring of each search point is maximized in expectation. For these applications, knowledge of the search space structure supplied by the analysis translates to significant gains in the performance of search.
*Advisors/Committee Members: Whitley, L. Darrell (advisor), Howe, Adele E. (advisor), Chong, Edwin K. P. (committee member), Bohm, A. P. Willem (committee member).*

Subjects/Keywords: combinatorial optimization; combinatorial search; local search; pseudo-Boolean functions; search space analysis

Record Details Similar Records

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APA · Chicago · MLA · Vancouver · CSE | Export to Zotero / EndNote / Reference Manager

APA (6^{th} Edition):

Sutton, A. M. (2011). Analysis of combinatorial search spaces for a class of NP-hard problems, An. (Doctoral Dissertation). Colorado State University. Retrieved from http://hdl.handle.net/10217/50161

Chicago Manual of Style (16^{th} Edition):

Sutton, Andrew M. “Analysis of combinatorial search spaces for a class of NP-hard problems, An.” 2011. Doctoral Dissertation, Colorado State University. Accessed February 28, 2021. http://hdl.handle.net/10217/50161.

MLA Handbook (7^{th} Edition):

Sutton, Andrew M. “Analysis of combinatorial search spaces for a class of NP-hard problems, An.” 2011. Web. 28 Feb 2021.

Vancouver:

Sutton AM. Analysis of combinatorial search spaces for a class of NP-hard problems, An. [Internet] [Doctoral dissertation]. Colorado State University; 2011. [cited 2021 Feb 28]. Available from: http://hdl.handle.net/10217/50161.

Council of Science Editors:

Sutton AM. Analysis of combinatorial search spaces for a class of NP-hard problems, An. [Doctoral Dissertation]. Colorado State University; 2011. Available from: http://hdl.handle.net/10217/50161