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Electronic Colloquium on Computational Complexity

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TR15-087 | 30th May 2015 22:34

Communication Complexity of Permutation-Invariant Functions



Motivated by the quest for a broader understanding of communication complexity of simple functions, we introduce the class of ''permutation-invariant'' functions. A partial function $f:\{0,1\}^n \times \{0,1\}^n\to \{0,1,?\}$ is permutation-invariant if for every bijection $\pi:\{1,\ldots,n\} \to \{1,\ldots,n\}$ and every $\mathbf{x}, \mathbf{y} \in \{0,1\}^n$, it is the case that $f(\mathbf{x}, \mathbf{y}) = f(\mathbf{x}^{\pi}, \mathbf{y}^{\pi})$. Most of the commonly studied functions in communication complexity are permutation-invariant. For such functions, we present a simple complexity measure (computable in time polynomial in $n$ given an implicit description of $f$) that describes their communication complexity up to polynomial factors and up to an additive error that is logarithmic in the input size. This gives a coarse taxonomy of the communication complexity of simple functions. Our work highlights the role of the well-known lower bounds of functions such as 'Set-Disjointness' and 'Indexing', while complementing them with the relatively lesser-known upper bounds for 'Gap-Inner-Product' (from the sketching literature) and 'Sparse-Gap-Inner-Product' (from the recent work of Canonne et al. [ITCS 2015]). We also present consequences to the study of communication complexity with imperfectly shared randomness where we show that for total permutation-invariant functions, imperfectly shared randomness results in only a polynomial blow-up in communication complexity after an additive $O(\log \log n)$ overhead.

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