The Greedy Method

# The Greedy Method - The Greedy Method http/www.seas.gwu.edu/~ayoussef/cs212/greedy.html 1 2 3 4 5 6 Greedy Template First Application Selection

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Greedy Template 1. First Application: Selection Sort 2. Second Application: Optimal Merge Patterns 3. Third Application: The Knapsack Problem 4. Fourth Application: Minimum Spanning Trees 5. Fifth Application: Single-Source Shortest Paths Problem 6. I. Greedy Template: Greedy( input I) begin while (solution is not complete) do Select the best element x in the remaining input I; Put x next in the output; Remove x from the remaining input; endwhile end The notion of "best" has to be defined in each problem separately. Therefore, the essense of each greedy algorithm is the selection policy Back to Top II. First Application: Selection Sort The Greedy Method http://www.seas.gwu.edu/~ayoussef/cs212/greedy.html 1 of 8 9/3/2010 4:51 AM

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To sort using the greedy method, have the selection policy select the minimum of the remaining input. That is, best=minimum. The resulting algorithm is a well-known sorting algorithm, called Selection Sort. It takes O(n^2) time, so it is not the best sorting algorithm. Back to Top III. Second Application: Optimal Merge Patterns Input: ' sorted arrays of length L[1], L[2],. ..,L[n] Problem: Ultimateley, to merge the arrays pairwise as fast as possible. The problem is to determine which pair to merge everytime. Method (the Greedy method): The selection policy (of which best pair of arrays to merge next) is to choose the two shortest remaining arrays. Implementation: 'eed a data structure to store the lengths of the arrays, to find the shortest 2 arrays at any time, to delete those lengths, and insert in a new length (for the newly merged array). In essence, the data structure has to support delete-min and insert. Clearly, a min-heap is ideal. Time complexity of the algorithm: The algorithm iterates (n-1) times. At every iteration two delete-mins and one insert is performed. The 3 operations take O(log n) in each iteration. Thus the total time is O(nlog n) for the while loop + O(n) for initial heap construction. That is, the total time is O(nlog n). Back to Top IV. Third Application: The Knapsack Problem Input: A weight capacity C, and n items of weights W[1:n] and monetary value P[1:n]. Problem: Determine which items to take and how much of each item so that the total weight is <= C, and the total value (profit) is maximized. Formulation of the problem: Let x[i] be the fraction taken from item i. 0 <= x[i] <= 1. The weight of the part taken from item i is x[i]*W[i] The Corresponding profit is x[i]*P[i] The problem is then to find the values of the array x[1:n] so that x[1]P[1]+x[2]P[2]+. ..+x[n]P[n] is The Greedy Method http://www.seas.gwu.edu/~ayoussef/cs212/greedy.html 2 of 8 9/3/2010 4:51 AM
maximized subject to the constraint that x[1]W[1]+x[2]W[2]+. ..+x[n]W[n] <= C

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The Greedy Method - The Greedy Method http/www.seas.gwu.edu/~ayoussef/cs212/greedy.html 1 2 3 4 5 6 Greedy Template First Application Selection

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