Locked constraint satisfaction problems

Lenka Zdeborová 1, Marc Mézard 1

Physical Review Letters 101 (2008) 078702

We introduce and study the random 'locked' constraint satisfaction problems. When increasing the density of constraints, they display a broad 'clustered' phase in which the space of solutions is divided into many isolated points. While the phase diagram can be found easily, these problems, in their clustered phase, are extremely hard from the algorithmic point of view: the best known algorithms all fail to find solutions. We thus propose new benchmarks of really hard optimization problems and provide insight into the origin of their typical hardness.

  • 1. Laboratoire de Physique Théorique et Modèles Statistiques (LPTMS),
    CNRS : UMR8626 – Université Paris XI - Paris Sud