4
votes
3answers
515 views

Does NP = “epsilon-P” (PTAS / BPP)?

Some NP-complete optimization problems, like the knapsack problem, have a solution reachable in polynomial time that is guaranteed to be within arbitrary ε of the optimum answer. (aka PTAS - ...
2
votes
1answer
703 views

Probability of system failure in a distributed network

I am trying to build a mathematical model of the availability of a file in a distributed file-system. The system works like this: a node $x$ stores a file $f$ (encoed using erasure codes) at $rb$ ...
11
votes
6answers
3k views

Solving NP problems in (usually) Polynomial time?

Just because a problem is NP-complete doesn't mean it can't be usually solved quickly. The best example of this is probably the traveling salesman problem, for which extraordinarily large instances ...