# Token swapping on trees

Biniaz A, Jain K, Lubiw A, Masárová Z, Miltzow T, Mondal D, Naredla AM, Tkadlec J, Turcotte A. 2023. Token swapping on trees. Discrete Mathematics and Theoretical Computer Science. 24(2), 9.

2022_DMTCS_Biniaz.pdf 2.07 MB [Published Version]

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Author
Biniaz, Ahmad; Jain, Kshitij; Lubiw, Anna; Masárová, ZuzanaISTA ; Miltzow, Tillmann; Mondal, Debajyoti; Naredla, Anurag Murty; Tkadlec, PepaISTA ; Turcotte, Alexi
Department
Abstract
The input to the token swapping problem is a graph with vertices v1, v2, . . . , vn, and n tokens with labels 1,2, . . . , n, one on each vertex. The goal is to get token i to vertex vi for all i= 1, . . . , n using a minimum number of swaps, where a swap exchanges the tokens on the endpoints of an edge.Token swapping on a tree, also known as “sorting with a transposition tree,” is not known to be in P nor NP-complete. We present some partial results: 1. An optimum swap sequence may need to perform a swap on a leaf vertex that has the correct token (a “happy leaf”), disproving a conjecture of Vaughan. 2. Any algorithm that fixes happy leaves—as all known approximation algorithms for the problem do—has approximation factor at least 4/3. Furthermore, the two best-known 2-approximation algorithms have approximation factor exactly 2. 3. A generalized problem—weighted coloured token swapping—is NP-complete on trees, but solvable in polynomial time on paths and stars. In this version, tokens and vertices have colours, and colours have weights. The goal is to get every token to a vertex of the same colour, and the cost of a swap is the sum of the weights of the two tokens involved.
Publishing Year
Date Published
2023-01-18
Journal Title
Discrete Mathematics and Theoretical Computer Science
Acknowledgement
This work was begun at the University of Waterloo and was partially supported by the Natural Sciences and Engineering Council of Canada (NSERC).
Volume
24
Issue
2
Article Number
9
ISSN
eISSN
IST-REx-ID

### Cite this

Biniaz A, Jain K, Lubiw A, et al. Token swapping on trees. Discrete Mathematics and Theoretical Computer Science. 2023;24(2). doi:10.46298/DMTCS.8383
Biniaz, A., Jain, K., Lubiw, A., Masárová, Z., Miltzow, T., Mondal, D., … Turcotte, A. (2023). Token swapping on trees. Discrete Mathematics and Theoretical Computer Science. EPI Sciences. https://doi.org/10.46298/DMTCS.8383
Biniaz, Ahmad, Kshitij Jain, Anna Lubiw, Zuzana Masárová, Tillmann Miltzow, Debajyoti Mondal, Anurag Murty Naredla, Josef Tkadlec, and Alexi Turcotte. “Token Swapping on Trees.” Discrete Mathematics and Theoretical Computer Science. EPI Sciences, 2023. https://doi.org/10.46298/DMTCS.8383.
A. Biniaz et al., “Token swapping on trees,” Discrete Mathematics and Theoretical Computer Science, vol. 24, no. 2. EPI Sciences, 2023.
Biniaz A, Jain K, Lubiw A, Masárová Z, Miltzow T, Mondal D, Naredla AM, Tkadlec J, Turcotte A. 2023. Token swapping on trees. Discrete Mathematics and Theoretical Computer Science. 24(2), 9.
Biniaz, Ahmad, et al. “Token Swapping on Trees.” Discrete Mathematics and Theoretical Computer Science, vol. 24, no. 2, 9, EPI Sciences, 2023, doi:10.46298/DMTCS.8383.
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2023-04-17
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arXiv 1903.06981