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On Colorful Bin Packing Games

by   Vittorio Bilò, et al.
Università degli Studi dell'Aquila
Università del Salento

We consider colorful bin packing games in which selfish players control a set of items which are to be packed into a minimum number of unit capacity bins. Each item has one of m≥ 2 colors and cannot be packed next to an item of the same color. All bins have the same unitary cost which is shared among the items it contains, so that players are interested in selecting a bin of minimum shared cost. We adopt two standard cost sharing functions: the egalitarian cost function which equally shares the cost of a bin among the items it contains, and the proportional cost function which shares the cost of a bin among the items it contains proportionally to their sizes. Although, under both cost functions, colorful bin packing games do not converge in general to a (pure) Nash equilibrium, we show that Nash equilibria are guaranteed to exist and we design an algorithm for computing a Nash equilibrium whose running time is polynomial under the egalitarian cost function and pseudo-polynomial for a constant number of colors under the proportional one. We also provide a complete characterization of the efficiency of Nash equilibria under both cost functions for general games, by showing that the prices of anarchy and stability are unbounded when m≥ 3 while they are equal to 3 for black and white games, where m=2. We finally focus on games with uniform sizes (i.e., all items have the same size) for which the two cost functions coincide. We show again a tight characterization of the efficiency of Nash equilibria and design an algorithm which returns Nash equilibria with best achievable performance.


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