Department of Computer Science | Institute of Theoretical Computer Science | CADMO

Theory of Combinatorial Algorithms

Prof. Emo Welzl and Prof. Bernd Gärtner

Mittagsseminar (in cooperation with A. Steger, D. Steurer and B. Sudakov)

Mittagsseminar Talk Information

Date and Time: Tuesday, July 30, 2019, 12:15 pm

Duration: 30 minutes

Location: OAT S15/S16/S17

Speaker: Jasper Lee (Brown University)

A Near-Optimal Adaptive Algorithm for Estimating Binary Mixtures of Unknown Coins

Given a mixture between two populations of coins: "positive" coins that have (unknown and potentially different) probabilities of heads at least 1/2+Δ and "negative" coins with probabilities at most 1/2-Δ, we consider the task of estimating the fraction ρ of coins of each type to within additive error ε, with a constant probability of success.

In this talk, we will focus on the construction of an algorithm with sample complexity O((ρ/ε²Δ²)(1+ρ log 1/ε)), which matches the fully-adaptive lower bound of Ω(ρ/ε²Δ²) shown in our paper, except for the regime where ρ = ω(1/log 1/ε).

The fine-grained adaptive flavour of both our algorithm and lower bound contrasts with much previous work in distributional testing and learning.

Joint work with Paul Valiant, available on arXiv at

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