The Ellipsoid Method: A Survey
Bland, Robert G.; Goldfarb, Donald; Todd, Michael J.
IN February 1979 a note by L.G. Khachiyan indicated how an ellipsoid method for linear programming can be implemented in polynomial time. This result has caused great excitement and stimulated a flood of technical papers. Ordinarily there would be no need for a survey of work so recent. The current circumstances are obviously exceptional. Word of Khachiyan's result has spread extraordinarily fast, much faster than comprehension of its significance. A variety of issues have in general not been well understood, including the exact character of the ellipsoid method and of Khachiyan's result on polynomiality, its practical significance in linear programming, its implementation, its potential applicability to problems outside of the domain of linear programming, and its relationship to earlier work. Our aim here is to help clarify these important issues in the context of a survey of the ellipsoid method, its historical antecedents, recent developments, and current research.
computer science; technical report
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