Computational Complexity of the α-Ham-Sandwich Problem

03/20/2020 ∙ by Man-Kwun Chiu, et al. ∙ 0

The classic Ham-Sandwich theorem states that for any d measurable sets in ℝ^d, there is a hyperplane that bisects them simultaneously. An extension by Bárány, Hubard, and Jerónimo [DCG 2008] states that if the sets are convex and well-separated, then for any given α_1, …, α_d ∈ [0, 1], there is a unique oriented hyperplane that cuts off a respective fraction α_1, …, α_d from each set. Steiger and Zhao [DCG 2010] proved a discrete analogue of this theorem, which we call the α-Ham-Sandwich theorem. They gave an algorithm to find the hyperplane in time O(n (log n)^d-3), where n is the total number of input points. The computational complexity of this search problem in high dimensions is open, quite unlike the complexity of the Ham-Sandwich problem, which is now known to be PPA-complete (Filos-Ratsikas and Goldberg [STOC 2019]). Recently, Fearley, Gordon, Mehta, and Savani [ICALP 2019] introduced a new sub-class of CLS (Continuous Local Search) called Unique End-of-Potential Line (UEOPL). This class captures problems in CLS that have unique solutions. We show that for the α-Ham-Sandwich theorem, the search problem of finding the dividing hyperplane lies in UEOPL. This gives the first non-trivial containment of the problem in a complexity class and places it in the company of classic search problems such as finding the fixed point of a contraction map, the unique sink orientation problem and the P-matrix linear complementarity problem.



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