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A journey through greediness and dependences 

Andrea Ottolini (UW)
Thursday, February 8, 2024 - 2:00pm to 3:00pm
PDL C-401
This talk is really three talks. In the first part, our main focus is an algorithm used to approximately solve an optimal transport problem that often arises in economic applications: how do we minimise the cost of matching producers with consumers, when the cost of a matching is a concave function of the distance? In the second part, we analyze how feedback can be used to improve the performance of certain card guessing games, closely related to well-known statistical problems such as bias-detection in clinical trials and hypothesis testing. In the third part, motivated by a novel notion of curvature on graphs, we provide some close-to-exact formula for the hitting times in Erdös-Rényi random graphs. These stories are held together by a common theme: sometimes, greediness and dependencies are not that harmful. This is based on joint works with J. He, S. Steinerberger and R. Tripathi.
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