Approximating Optimal Bidirectional Macro Schemes

03/04/2020
by   Luís M. S. Russo, et al.
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Lempel-Ziv is an easy-to-compute member of a wide family of so-called macro schemes; it restricts pointers to go in one direction only. Optimal bidirectional macro schemes are NP-complete to find, but they may provide much better compression on highly repetitive sequences. We consider the problem of approximating optimal bidirectional macro schemes. We describe a simulated annealing algorithm that usually converges quickly. Moreover, in some cases, we obtain bidirectional macro schemes that are provably a 2-approximation of the optimal. We test our algorithm on a number of artificial repetitive texts and verify that it is efficient in practice and outperforms Lempel-Ziv, sometimes by a wide margin.

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