General Information 

Instructor Information 
 Name: Dr. My T. Thai
 Office: E438 CISE
 Phone: 3523926842
 Email:
mythai@cise.ufl.edu
 Office Hours: 1:15pm  2:15pm TW

Course Description 
 For many optimization problems, it is almost
unfeasible to find an exact solution. Since approximation algorithms
can provide techniques for nearoptimal solutions, the study of this
area is significantly important. This course covers several techniques
to design and analyze many approximation algorithms for
computationally hard problems, divided into three parts: (a)
Combinatorial algorithms, (b) Linear programming based algorithms, and
(c) Randomized algorithms. This course also addresses many other
problems existing in the networking and computational biology research
literature, such as connected dominating set, Steiner trees, pooling
designs, and DNA sequencing.

Course Objectives 
 Understand the essential techniques to
design and analyze approximation algorithms, including the following:
 Combinatorial methods
 Linear programming
 Primaldual and relaxation methods
 Randomized algorithms
 Hardness of approximation
 Able to model and solve many practical
problems raising in our real life applications
 Grasp the key ideas of graph theory

Prerequisites 
 There is no formal prerequisite for this
course. However, students should have a solid background in algorithms
and the theory of NPcompleteness.

Textbooks 
 Required Textbook:

Vijay Vazirani, Approximation Algorithms, SpringerVerlag, 2001,
ISBN: 3540653678
 Recommended Textbooks:
 Vasek Chvatal, Linear Programming,
W. H. Freeman Company, 1st ed., 1983, ISBN: 0716711958
 Michael R. Garey and David S. Johnson,
Computers and Intractability: A Guide to the Theory of
NPCompleteness, W. H. Freeman Company, 1990, ISBN: 0716710455
 Appropriate lecture notes will be provided
to cover some topics not covered in the text books

Grading Policies 
 Homework Assignments:
 4 homework assignments, each weighs 15%
 Due at the beginning of the lecture on
the due date
 No late assignment will be accepted
 Midterm Exam:
 One midterm exam, weighs 20%
 In class, open books, open notes
 Final Group Project:
 Cutoff points:
 A >= 85%, 85% > B >= 75%, 75% >
C >= 65%

Other Policies 
 Academic Integrity Policy:
http://regulations.ufl.edu/chapter4/4017.pdf
 Collaboration:
 You may discuss with other students on
solutions of homework assignments. However, you must write up
solutions on your own independently
 Cite any sources that you use to help obtain your
solutions (but do not copy the sources)
