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Track C: Foundations of Networks and Multi-Agent Systems: Models, Algorithms and Information Management

**Published in:** LIPIcs, Volume 132, 46th International Colloquium on Automata, Languages, and Programming (ICALP 2019)

Temporal graphs are used to abstractly model real-life networks that are inherently dynamic in nature, in the sense that the network structure undergoes discrete changes over time. Given a static underlying graph G=(V,E), a temporal graph on G is a sequence of snapshots {G_t=(V,E_t) subseteq G: t in N}, one for each time step t >= 1. In this paper we study stochastic temporal graphs, i.e. stochastic processes G={G_t subseteq G: t in N} whose random variables are the snapshots of a temporal graph on G. A natural feature of stochastic temporal graphs which can be observed in various real-life scenarios is a memory effect in the appearance probabilities of particular edges; that is, the probability an edge e in E appears at time step t depends on its appearance (or absence) at the previous k steps. In this paper we study the hierarchy of models memory-k, k >= 0, which address this memory effect in an edge-centric network evolution: every edge of G has its own probability distribution for its appearance over time, independently of all other edges. Clearly, for every k >= 1, memory-(k-1) is a special case of memory-k. However, in this paper we make a clear distinction between the values k=0 ("no memory") and k >= 1 ("some memory"), as in some cases these models exhibit a fundamentally different computational behavior for these values of k, as our results indicate. For every k >= 0 we investigate the computational complexity of two naturally related, but fundamentally different, temporal path (or journey) problems: {Minimum Arrival} and {Best Policy}. In the first problem we are looking for the expected arrival time of a foremost journey between two designated vertices {s},{y}. In the second one we are looking for the expected arrival time of the best policy for actually choosing a particular {s}-{y} journey. We present a detailed investigation of the computational landscape of both problems for the different values of memory k. Among other results we prove that, surprisingly, {Minimum Arrival} is strictly harder than {Best Policy}; in fact, for k=0, {Minimum Arrival} is #P-hard while {Best Policy} is solvable in O(n^2) time.

Eleni C. Akrida, George B. Mertzios, Sotiris Nikoletseas, Christoforos Raptopoulos, Paul G. Spirakis, and Viktor Zamaraev. How Fast Can We Reach a Target Vertex in Stochastic Temporal Graphs?. In 46th International Colloquium on Automata, Languages, and Programming (ICALP 2019). Leibniz International Proceedings in Informatics (LIPIcs), Volume 132, pp. 131:1-131:14, Schloss Dagstuhl – Leibniz-Zentrum für Informatik (2019)

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@InProceedings{akrida_et_al:LIPIcs.ICALP.2019.131, author = {Akrida, Eleni C. and Mertzios, George B. and Nikoletseas, Sotiris and Raptopoulos, Christoforos and Spirakis, Paul G. and Zamaraev, Viktor}, title = {{How Fast Can We Reach a Target Vertex in Stochastic Temporal Graphs?}}, booktitle = {46th International Colloquium on Automata, Languages, and Programming (ICALP 2019)}, pages = {131:1--131:14}, series = {Leibniz International Proceedings in Informatics (LIPIcs)}, ISBN = {978-3-95977-109-2}, ISSN = {1868-8969}, year = {2019}, volume = {132}, editor = {Baier, Christel and Chatzigiannakis, Ioannis and Flocchini, Paola and Leonardi, Stefano}, publisher = {Schloss Dagstuhl -- Leibniz-Zentrum f{\"u}r Informatik}, address = {Dagstuhl, Germany}, URL = {https://drops.dagstuhl.de/entities/document/10.4230/LIPIcs.ICALP.2019.131}, URN = {urn:nbn:de:0030-drops-107071}, doi = {10.4230/LIPIcs.ICALP.2019.131}, annote = {Keywords: Temporal network, stochastic temporal graph, temporal path, #P-hard problem, polynomial-time approximation scheme} }

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**Published in:** LIPIcs, Volume 107, 45th International Colloquium on Automata, Languages, and Programming (ICALP 2018)

Modern, inherently dynamic systems are usually characterized by a network structure, i.e. an underlying graph topology, which is subject to discrete changes over time. Given a static underlying graph G, a temporal graph can be represented via an assignment of a set of integer time-labels to every edge of G, indicating the discrete time steps when this edge is active. While most of the recent theoretical research on temporal graphs has focused on the notion of a temporal path and other "path-related" temporal notions, only few attempts have been made to investigate "non-path" temporal graph problems. In this paper, motivated by applications in sensor and in transportation networks, we introduce and study two natural temporal extensions of the classical problem Vertex Cover. In our first problem, Temporal Vertex Cover, the aim is to cover every edge at least once during the lifetime of the temporal graph, where an edge can only be covered by one of its endpoints at a time step when it is active. In our second, more pragmatic variation Sliding Window Temporal Vertex Cover, we are also given a natural number Delta, and our aim is to cover every edge at least once at every Delta consecutive time steps. In both cases we wish to minimize the total number of "vertex appearances" that are needed to cover the whole graph. We present a thorough investigation of the computational complexity and approximability of these two temporal covering problems. In particular, we provide strong hardness results, complemented by various approximation and exact algorithms. Some of our algorithms are polynomial-time, while others are asymptotically almost optimal under the Exponential Time Hypothesis (ETH) and other plausible complexity assumptions.

Eleni C. Akrida, George B. Mertzios, Paul G. Spirakis, and Viktor Zamaraev. Temporal Vertex Cover with a Sliding Time Window. In 45th International Colloquium on Automata, Languages, and Programming (ICALP 2018). Leibniz International Proceedings in Informatics (LIPIcs), Volume 107, pp. 148:1-148:14, Schloss Dagstuhl – Leibniz-Zentrum für Informatik (2018)

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@InProceedings{akrida_et_al:LIPIcs.ICALP.2018.148, author = {Akrida, Eleni C. and Mertzios, George B. and Spirakis, Paul G. and Zamaraev, Viktor}, title = {{Temporal Vertex Cover with a Sliding Time Window}}, booktitle = {45th International Colloquium on Automata, Languages, and Programming (ICALP 2018)}, pages = {148:1--148:14}, series = {Leibniz International Proceedings in Informatics (LIPIcs)}, ISBN = {978-3-95977-076-7}, ISSN = {1868-8969}, year = {2018}, volume = {107}, editor = {Chatzigiannakis, Ioannis and Kaklamanis, Christos and Marx, D\'{a}niel and Sannella, Donald}, publisher = {Schloss Dagstuhl -- Leibniz-Zentrum f{\"u}r Informatik}, address = {Dagstuhl, Germany}, URL = {https://drops.dagstuhl.de/entities/document/10.4230/LIPIcs.ICALP.2018.148}, URN = {urn:nbn:de:0030-drops-91522}, doi = {10.4230/LIPIcs.ICALP.2018.148}, annote = {Keywords: Temporal networks, temporal vertex cover, APX-hard, approximation algorithm, Exponential Time Hypothesis} }

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