# Tagged Questions

Do NOT use this tag; instead you might use co.combinatorics or various more specific tags.

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### Why is the Frankl conjecture hard?

This is a naive question that could justifiably be quickly closed. Nevertheless: Q. Why is Péter Frankl's conjecture so difficult? If any two sets in some family of sets have a union that also ...
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### Is it easy to produce hard-to-color graphs?

This question arises from my recent visit to my daughter's second-grade class, where I led some discussion and activities on graph coloring (see Math for seven-year-olds). In one such activity, each ...
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### How many binary operations are associative?

Let $X$ be a finite set of $n$ elements, and consider a binary operation $\odot: X \times X \rightarrow X$. There are $n^{n^2}$ such binary operations, as the $n \times n$ table entries can each be ...
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### Sequences with integral means

Let $S(n)$ be the sequence whose first element is $n$, and from then onward, the next element is the smallest natural number ${\ge}1$ that ensures that the mean of all the numbers in the sequence is ...
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### Hidden points in polygons

Let $h(n)$ be the largest number of mutually invisible points that can be located in a polygon $P$ of $n$ vertices. Two points $x$ and $y$ are mutually invisible if the segment $xy$ contains a point ...
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### Three-halves-free words (analogous to square-free)

A square-free word is a string of symbols (a "word") that avoids the pattern $XX$, where $X$ is any consecutive sequence of symbols in the string. For alphabets of two symbols, the longest square-free ...
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### Is every graph the center of some other graph?

The center of a graph $G$ is the set of vertices that minimize the largest distance to vertices in $G$, e.g., in the graph below, that radius is $4$:           Define the ...
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### What is the probability that two random permutations have the same order?

I am interested in the orders of random permutations. Since the law of the logarithm of the order of a permutation converges to a normal law (for instance Erdös-Turan Statistical group theory III), ...
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### Finding combinatorial models / statistics

In many cases in combinatorics and especially algebraic combinatorics with some representation theory, the main problem is about finding the correct statistic on a mathematical object. For example, ...
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### Optimal shape for stabbing balls in $\mathbb{R}^3$

I have radius $r < \frac{1}{2}$ congruent balls with centers randomly distributed uniformly within a region, say, within a unit-radius sphere $S$. I shoot a ray/path through $S$, hoping to ...
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### Is this (funny) combinatorial optimization problem NP-hard ? (cutting numbers and placing them in urns)

The parameters of the problem are $m$ numbers which are integers (these numbers are denoted $b_i$), $n$ urns and in each urn, we can place $C$ numbers. We assume $nC \geq m$ so that the problem is ...
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### Minimal blocking objects with shadows like a cube

This is a more geometric version of the previous question, "Lattice-cube minimal blocking sets". I will first specialize to $\mathbb{R}^3$, $d=3$. View an $n \times n \times n$ cube $C_3(n)$ as ...
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### How to characterize a Self-avoiding path.

I cannot find any answer to that apparently simple problem : On a square lattice, a path is given by a sequence of relative moves in {"move forward", "turn right" and "turn left"}. Is there a rule ...
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### How to compute KL-divergence when PMF contains 0s?

From the Wikipedia page on Kullback-Leibler divergence, the way to compute this metric is to utilize the following formula: The way I understand this is to compute the PMFs of two given sample sets ...
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### Three half circles on the plane may not meet nicely

Let $H$ denote the union of the northen hemisphere of the unit circle $S^{1}$ with the interval $[-1,1]$ on the $x$-axis. That is, $H=\{(x,\sqrt{1-x^{2}}):-1\le x\le 1\}\cup\{(x,0):-1\le x\le 1\}$ ...
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### Repeats of all binary strings of length k

The question seems like it should be known, but I was not able to find it anywhere. How many binary strings of length $n$ are required so that for every $k$ positions in these strings, all $2^k$ ...
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### palindromic subsequences

I'd like any insight or references to the following two conjectures (see the glossary below for definitions): Conjecture 1: For any string $x$, there exists a longest common subsequence of $x$ and ...
Let $R$ be a rectangular region of the integer lattice $\mathbb{Z}^2$, each of whose unit squares is labeled with a number in $\lbrace 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 \rbrace$. Say that such a labeled $R$ is die-...