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97
The Probabilistic Analysis of a Greedy Satisfiability Algorithm
, 2002
"... Consider the following simple, greedy DavisPutnam algorithm applied to a random 3CNF formula of fixed density (clauses to variables ratio): Arbitrarily select and set to True a literal that appears in as many clauses as possible, irrespective of their size (and irrespective of the number of occu ..."
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Cited by 76 (6 self)
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Consider the following simple, greedy DavisPutnam algorithm applied to a random 3CNF formula of fixed density (clauses to variables ratio): Arbitrarily select and set to True a literal that appears in as many clauses as possible, irrespective of their size (and irrespective of the number of occurrences of the negation of the literal). Delete these clauses from the formula, and also delete the negation of this literal from any clauses it appears. Repeat. If however unit clauses ever appear, then first repeatedly and in any order set the literals in them to True and delete and shrink clauses accordingly, until no unit clause remains. Also if at any step an empty clause appears, then do not backtrack, but just terminate the algorithm and report failure. A slight modification of this algorithm is probabilistically analyzed in this paper (rigorously). It is proved that for random formulas of n variables and density up to 3.42, it succeeds in producing a satisfying truth assignment with bounded away from zero probability, as n approaches infinity. Therefore the satisfiability threshold is at least 3.42.
Optimal myopic algorithms for random 3SAT
 In Proceedings of the 41st Annual IEEE Symposium on Foundations of Computer Science
, 2000
"... Let F 3 (n; m) be a random 3SAT formula formed by selecting uniformly, independently, and with replacement, m clauses among all 8 \Gamma n 3 \Delta possible 3clauses over n variables. It has been conjectured that there exists a constant r 3 such that for any ffl ? 0, F 3 (n; (r 3 \Gamma ffl)n ..."
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Cited by 72 (9 self)
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Let F 3 (n; m) be a random 3SAT formula formed by selecting uniformly, independently, and with replacement, m clauses among all 8 \Gamma n 3 \Delta possible 3clauses over n variables. It has been conjectured that there exists a constant r 3 such that for any ffl ? 0, F 3 (n; (r 3 \Gamma ffl)n) is almost surely satisfiable, but F 3 (n; (r 3 + ffl)n) is almost surely unsatisfiable. The best lower bounds for the potential value of r 3 have come from analyzing rather simple extensions of unitclause propagation. Recently, it was shown [2] that all these extensions can be cast in a common framework and analyzed in a uniform manner by employing differential equations. Here, we determine optimal algorithms expressible in that framework, establishing r 3 ? 3:26. We extend the analysis via differential equations, and make extensive use of a new optimization problem we call "maxdensity multiplechoice knapsack". The structure of optimal knapsack solutions elegantly characterizes the choi...
A New Look at Survey Propagation and its Generalizations
"... We study the survey propagation algorithm [19, 5, 4], which is an iterative technique that appears to be very effective in solving random kSAT problems even with densities close to threshold. We first describe how any SAT formula can be associated with a novel family of Markov random fields (MRFs), ..."
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Cited by 66 (11 self)
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We study the survey propagation algorithm [19, 5, 4], which is an iterative technique that appears to be very effective in solving random kSAT problems even with densities close to threshold. We first describe how any SAT formula can be associated with a novel family of Markov random fields (MRFs), parameterized by a real number ρ. We then show that applying belief propagation— a wellknown “messagepassing” technique—to this family of MRFs recovers various algorithms, ranging from pure survey propagation at one extreme (ρ = 1) to standard belief propagation on the uniform distribution over SAT assignments at the other extreme (ρ = 0). Configurations in these MRFs have a natural interpretation as generalized satisfiability assignments, on which a partial order can be defined. We isolate cores as minimal elements in this partial
On the solutionspace geometry of random constraint satisfaction problems
 In STOC ’06: Proceedings of the thirtyeighth annual ACM symposium on Theory of computing
, 2006
"... For a large number of random constraint satisfaction problems, such as random kSAT and random graph and hypergraph coloring, there are very good estimates of the largest constraint density for which solutions exist. Yet, all known polynomialtime algorithms for these problems fail to find solutions ..."
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Cited by 61 (2 self)
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For a large number of random constraint satisfaction problems, such as random kSAT and random graph and hypergraph coloring, there are very good estimates of the largest constraint density for which solutions exist. Yet, all known polynomialtime algorithms for these problems fail to find solutions even at much lower densities. To understand the origin of this gap we study how the structure of the space of solutions evolves in such problems as constraints are added. In particular, we prove that much before solutions disappear, they organize into an exponential number of clusters, each of which is relatively small and far apart from all other clusters. Moreover, inside each cluster most variables are frozen, i.e., take only one value. The existence of such frozen variables gives a satisfying intuitive explanation for the failure of the polynomialtime algorithms analyzed so far. At the same time, our results establish rigorously one of the two main hypotheses underlying Survey Propagation, a heuristic introduced by physicists in recent years that appears to perform extraordinarily well on random constraint satisfaction problems. 1
Satisfiability Solvers
, 2008
"... The past few years have seen an enormous progress in the performance of Boolean satisfiability (SAT) solvers. Despite the worstcase exponential run time of all known algorithms, satisfiability solvers are increasingly leaving their mark as a generalpurpose tool in areas as diverse as software and h ..."
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Cited by 50 (0 self)
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The past few years have seen an enormous progress in the performance of Boolean satisfiability (SAT) solvers. Despite the worstcase exponential run time of all known algorithms, satisfiability solvers are increasingly leaving their mark as a generalpurpose tool in areas as diverse as software and hardware verification [29–31, 228], automatic test pattern generation [138, 221], planning [129, 197], scheduling [103], and even challenging problems from algebra [238]. Annual SAT competitions have led to the development of dozens of clever implementations of such solvers [e.g. 13,
Bounding the unsatisfiability threshold of random 3SAT
"... We lower the upper bound for the threshold for random 3SAT from 4.6011 to 4.596 through two different approaches, both giving the same result. (Assuming the threshold exists, as is generally believed but still not rigorously shown.) In both approaches, we start with a sum over all truth assignments ..."
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Cited by 44 (3 self)
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We lower the upper bound for the threshold for random 3SAT from 4.6011 to 4.596 through two different approaches, both giving the same result. (Assuming the threshold exists, as is generally believed but still not rigorously shown.) In both approaches, we start with a sum over all truth assignments that appears in an upper bound by Kirousis et al. to the the probability that a random 3SAT formula is satisfiable. In the first approach, this sum is reformulated as the partition function of a spin system consisting of n sites each of which may assume the values 0 or 1. We then obtain an asymptotic expression for this function that results from the application of an optimization technique from statistical
Survey propagation: an algorithm for satisfiability
, 2002
"... ABSTRACT: We study the satisfiability of randomly generated formulas formed by M clauses of exactly K literals over N Boolean variables. For a given value of N the problem is known to be most difficult when α = M/N is close to the experimental threshold αc separating the region where almost all form ..."
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Cited by 43 (3 self)
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ABSTRACT: We study the satisfiability of randomly generated formulas formed by M clauses of exactly K literals over N Boolean variables. For a given value of N the problem is known to be most difficult when α = M/N is close to the experimental threshold αc separating the region where almost all formulas are SAT from the region where all formulas are UNSAT. Recent results from a statistical physics analysis suggest that the difficulty is related to the existence of a clustering phenomenon of the solutions when α is close to (but smaller than) αc. We introduce a new type of message passing algorithm which allows to find efficiently a satisfying assignment of the variables in this difficult region. This algorithm is iterative and composed of two main parts. The first is a messagepassing procedure which generalizes the usual methods like SumProduct or Belief Propagation: It passes messages that may be thought of as surveys over clusters of the ordinary messages. The second part uses the detailed probabilistic information obtained from the surveys in order to fix variables and simplify the problem. Eventually, the simplified problem that remains is solved by a conventional
The Asymptotic Order of the Random kSAT Threshold
 In Proc. FOCS
, 2002
"... Form a random kSAT formula on n variables by selecting uniformly and independently m = rn clauses out of all 2 possible kclauses. The Satisfiability Threshold Conjecture asserts that for each k there exists a constant r k such that, as n tends to infinity, the probability that the formula is sa ..."
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Cited by 42 (13 self)
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Form a random kSAT formula on n variables by selecting uniformly and independently m = rn clauses out of all 2 possible kclauses. The Satisfiability Threshold Conjecture asserts that for each k there exists a constant r k such that, as n tends to infinity, the probability that the formula is satisfiable tends to 1 if r < r k and to 0 if r > r k . It has long been known that 2 =k < r k < 2 . We prove that r k > 2 ln 2 d k , where d k ! (1 + ln 2)=2. Our proof also allows a blurry glimpse of the "geometry" of the set of satisfying truth assignments.
Random kSAT: two moments suffice to cross a sharp threshold
 CoRR
, 2006
"... Abstract. Many NPcomplete constraint satisfaction problems appear to undergo a “phase transition” from solubility to insolubility when the constraint density passes through a critical threshold. In all such cases it is easy to derive upper bounds on the location of the threshold by showing that abo ..."
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Cited by 40 (4 self)
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Abstract. Many NPcomplete constraint satisfaction problems appear to undergo a “phase transition” from solubility to insolubility when the constraint density passes through a critical threshold. In all such cases it is easy to derive upper bounds on the location of the threshold by showing that above a certain density the first moment (expectation) of the number of solutions tends to zero. We show that in the case of certain symmetric constraints, considering the second moment of the number of solutions yields nearly matching lower bounds for the location of the threshold. Specifically, we prove that the threshold for both random hypergraph 2colorability (Property B) and random NotAllEqual kSAT is 2 k−1 ln 2 − O(1). As a corollary, we establish that the threshold for random kSAT is of order Θ(2 k), resolving a longstanding open problem.
Setting 2 variables at a time yields a new lower bound for random 3SAT (Extended Abstract)
 STOC
, 2000
"... Let X be a set of n Boolean variables and denote by C(X) the set of all 3clauses over X, i.e. the set of all 8(3) possible disjunctions of three distinct, noncomplementary literais from variables in X. Let F(n, m) be a random 3SAT formula formed by selecting, with replacement, m clauses uniformly ..."
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Cited by 39 (5 self)
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Let X be a set of n Boolean variables and denote by C(X) the set of all 3clauses over X, i.e. the set of all 8(3) possible disjunctions of three distinct, noncomplementary literais from variables in X. Let F(n, m) be a random 3SAT formula formed by selecting, with replacement, m clauses uniformly at random from C(X) and taking their conjunction. The satisfiability threshold conjecture asserts that there exists a constant ra such that as n+ c¢, F(n, rn) is satisfiable with probability that tends to 1 if r < ra, but unsatisfiable with probability that tends to 1 if r:> r3. Experimental evidence suggests rz ~ 4.2. We prove rz> 3.145 improving over the previous best lower bound r3> 3.003 due to Frieze and Suen. For this, we introduce a satisfiability heuristic that works iteratively, permanently setting the value of a pair of variables in each round. The framework we develop for the analysis of our heuristic allows us to also derive most previous lower bounds for random 3SAT in a uniform manner and with little effort.