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**Published in:** LIPIcs, Volume 274, 31st Annual European Symposium on Algorithms (ESA 2023)

We present efficient algorithms for solving systems of linear equations in 1-Laplacians of well-shaped simplicial complexes. 1-Laplacians, or higher-dimensional Laplacians, generalize graph Laplacians to higher-dimensional simplicial complexes and play a key role in computational topology and topological data analysis. Previously, nearly-linear time solvers were developed for simplicial complexes with known collapsing sequences and bounded Betti numbers, such as those triangulating a three-ball in ℝ³ (Cohen, Fasy, Miller, Nayyeri, Peng, and Walkington [SODA'2014], Black, Maxwell, Nayyeri, and Winkelman [SODA'2022], Black and Nayyeri [ICALP'2022]). Furthermore, Nested Dissection provides quadratic time solvers for more general systems with nonzero structures representing well-shaped simplicial complexes embedded in ℝ³.
We generalize the specialized solvers for 1-Laplacians to simplicial complexes with additional geometric structures but without collapsing sequences and bounded Betti numbers, and we improve the runtime of Nested Dissection. We focus on simplicial complexes that meet two conditions: (1) each individual simplex has a bounded aspect ratio, and (2) they can be divided into "disjoint" and balanced regions with well-shaped interiors and boundaries. Our solvers draw inspiration from the Incomplete Nested Dissection for stiffness matrices of well-shaped trusses (Kyng, Peng, Schwieterman, and Zhang [STOC'2018]).

Ming Ding and Peng Zhang. Efficient 1-Laplacian Solvers for Well-Shaped Simplicial Complexes: Beyond Betti Numbers and Collapsing Sequences. In 31st Annual European Symposium on Algorithms (ESA 2023). Leibniz International Proceedings in Informatics (LIPIcs), Volume 274, pp. 41:1-41:19, Schloss Dagstuhl - Leibniz-Zentrum für Informatik (2023)

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@InProceedings{ding_et_al:LIPIcs.ESA.2023.41, author = {Ding, Ming and Zhang, Peng}, title = {{Efficient 1-Laplacian Solvers for Well-Shaped Simplicial Complexes: Beyond Betti Numbers and Collapsing Sequences}}, booktitle = {31st Annual European Symposium on Algorithms (ESA 2023)}, pages = {41:1--41:19}, series = {Leibniz International Proceedings in Informatics (LIPIcs)}, ISBN = {978-3-95977-295-2}, ISSN = {1868-8969}, year = {2023}, volume = {274}, editor = {G{\o}rtz, Inge Li and Farach-Colton, Martin and Puglisi, Simon J. and Herman, Grzegorz}, publisher = {Schloss Dagstuhl -- Leibniz-Zentrum f{\"u}r Informatik}, address = {Dagstuhl, Germany}, URL = {https://drops.dagstuhl.de/entities/document/10.4230/LIPIcs.ESA.2023.41}, URN = {urn:nbn:de:0030-drops-186947}, doi = {10.4230/LIPIcs.ESA.2023.41}, annote = {Keywords: 1-Laplacian Solvers, Simplicial Complexes, Incomplete Nested Dissection} }

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Track A: Algorithms, Complexity and Games

**Published in:** LIPIcs, Volume 229, 49th International Colloquium on Automata, Languages, and Programming (ICALP 2022)

We study linear equations in combinatorial Laplacians of k-dimensional simplicial complexes (k-complexes), a natural generalization of graph Laplacians. Combinatorial Laplacians play a crucial role in homology and are a central tool in topology. Beyond this, they have various applications in data analysis and physical modeling problems. It is known that nearly-linear time solvers exist for graph Laplacians. However, nearly-linear time solvers for combinatorial Laplacians are only known for restricted classes of complexes.
This paper shows that linear equations in combinatorial Laplacians of 2-complexes are as hard to solve as general linear equations. More precisely, for any constant c ≥ 1, if we can solve linear equations in combinatorial Laplacians of 2-complexes up to high accuracy in time Õ((# of nonzero coefficients)^c), then we can solve general linear equations with polynomially bounded integer coefficients and condition numbers up to high accuracy in time Õ((# of nonzero coefficients)^c). We prove this by a nearly-linear time reduction from general linear equations to combinatorial Laplacians of 2-complexes. Our reduction preserves the sparsity of the problem instances up to poly-logarithmic factors.

Ming Ding, Rasmus Kyng, Maximilian Probst Gutenberg, and Peng Zhang. Hardness Results for Laplacians of Simplicial Complexes via Sparse-Linear Equation Complete Gadgets. In 49th International Colloquium on Automata, Languages, and Programming (ICALP 2022). Leibniz International Proceedings in Informatics (LIPIcs), Volume 229, pp. 53:1-53:19, Schloss Dagstuhl - Leibniz-Zentrum für Informatik (2022)

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@InProceedings{ding_et_al:LIPIcs.ICALP.2022.53, author = {Ding, Ming and Kyng, Rasmus and Gutenberg, Maximilian Probst and Zhang, Peng}, title = {{Hardness Results for Laplacians of Simplicial Complexes via Sparse-Linear Equation Complete Gadgets}}, booktitle = {49th International Colloquium on Automata, Languages, and Programming (ICALP 2022)}, pages = {53:1--53:19}, series = {Leibniz International Proceedings in Informatics (LIPIcs)}, ISBN = {978-3-95977-235-8}, ISSN = {1868-8969}, year = {2022}, volume = {229}, editor = {Boja\'{n}czyk, Miko{\l}aj and Merelli, Emanuela and Woodruff, David P.}, publisher = {Schloss Dagstuhl -- Leibniz-Zentrum f{\"u}r Informatik}, address = {Dagstuhl, Germany}, URL = {https://drops.dagstuhl.de/entities/document/10.4230/LIPIcs.ICALP.2022.53}, URN = {urn:nbn:de:0030-drops-163945}, doi = {10.4230/LIPIcs.ICALP.2022.53}, annote = {Keywords: Simplicial Complexes, Combinatorial Laplacians, Linear Equations, Fine-Grained Complexity} }

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Track A: Algorithms, Complexity and Games

**Published in:** LIPIcs, Volume 229, 49th International Colloquium on Automata, Languages, and Programming (ICALP 2022)

We give a nearly-linear time reduction that encodes any linear program as a 2-commodity flow problem with only a small blow-up in size. Under mild assumptions similar to those employed by modern fast solvers for linear programs, our reduction causes only a polylogarithmic multiplicative increase in the size of the program, and runs in nearly-linear time. Our reduction applies to high-accuracy approximation algorithms and exact algorithms. Given an approximate solution to the 2-commodity flow problem, we can extract a solution to the linear program in linear time with only a polynomial factor increase in the error. This implies that any algorithm that solves the 2-commodity flow problem can solve linear programs in essentially the same time. Given a directed graph with edge capacities and two source-sink pairs, the goal of the 2-commodity flow problem is to maximize the sum of the flows routed between the two source-sink pairs subject to edge capacities and flow conservation. A 2-commodity flow problem can be formulated as a linear program, which can be solved to high accuracy in almost the current matrix multiplication time (Cohen-Lee-Song JACM'21). Our reduction shows that linear programs can be approximately solved, to high accuracy, using 2-commodity flow as well.
Our proof follows the outline of Itai’s polynomial-time reduction of a linear program to a 2-commodity flow problem (JACM’78). Itai’s reduction shows that exactly solving 2-commodity flow and exactly solving linear programming are polynomial-time equivalent. We improve Itai’s reduction to nearly preserve the problem representation size in each step. In addition, we establish an error bound for approximately solving each intermediate problem in the reduction, and show that the accumulated error is polynomially bounded. We remark that our reduction does not run in strongly polynomial time and that it is open whether 2-commodity flow and linear programming are equivalent in strongly polynomial time.

Ming Ding, Rasmus Kyng, and Peng Zhang. Two-Commodity Flow Is Equivalent to Linear Programming Under Nearly-Linear Time Reductions. In 49th International Colloquium on Automata, Languages, and Programming (ICALP 2022). Leibniz International Proceedings in Informatics (LIPIcs), Volume 229, pp. 54:1-54:19, Schloss Dagstuhl - Leibniz-Zentrum für Informatik (2022)

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@InProceedings{ding_et_al:LIPIcs.ICALP.2022.54, author = {Ding, Ming and Kyng, Rasmus and Zhang, Peng}, title = {{Two-Commodity Flow Is Equivalent to Linear Programming Under Nearly-Linear Time Reductions}}, booktitle = {49th International Colloquium on Automata, Languages, and Programming (ICALP 2022)}, pages = {54:1--54:19}, series = {Leibniz International Proceedings in Informatics (LIPIcs)}, ISBN = {978-3-95977-235-8}, ISSN = {1868-8969}, year = {2022}, volume = {229}, editor = {Boja\'{n}czyk, Miko{\l}aj and Merelli, Emanuela and Woodruff, David P.}, publisher = {Schloss Dagstuhl -- Leibniz-Zentrum f{\"u}r Informatik}, address = {Dagstuhl, Germany}, URL = {https://drops.dagstuhl.de/entities/document/10.4230/LIPIcs.ICALP.2022.54}, URN = {urn:nbn:de:0030-drops-163950}, doi = {10.4230/LIPIcs.ICALP.2022.54}, annote = {Keywords: Two-Commodity Flow Problems, Linear Programming, Fine-Grained Complexity} }

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