Optimal search in trees - extended abstract+appendix

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperpeer-review


It is well known that the optimal solution for searching in a finite total order set is the binary search. In binary search we divide the set into two `halves', by querying the middle element, and continue the search on the suitable half. What is the equivalent of binary search, when the set P is partially ordered? A query in this case is to a point xεP, with two possible answers: `yes', indicates that the required element is `below' x, or `no' if the element is not bellow x. We show that the problem of computing an optimal strategy for search in Posets that are tree-like (or forests) is polynomial in the size of the tree, and requires at most O(n2log2n) steps. Optimal solutions of such search problems are often needed in program testing and debugging, where a given program is represented as a tree and a bug should be found using a minimal set of queries.

Original languageEnglish
Number of pages8
StatePublished - 1997
EventProceedings of the 1996 8th Annual ACM-SIAM Symposium on Discrete Algorithms - New Orleans, LA, USA
Duration: 5 Jan 19977 Jan 1997


ConferenceProceedings of the 1996 8th Annual ACM-SIAM Symposium on Discrete Algorithms
CityNew Orleans, LA, USA

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Software
  • General Mathematics


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