On an efficient dynamic programming technique of F. F. Yao

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


A very useful technique of F. F. Yao for providing efficient dynamic programming algorithms involves establishing the so called quadrangle inequalities on cost functions. A major application of this technique is in speeding up the classical dynamic programming algorithm for optimal binary search trees. We consider a generalization of the classical problem, which arises from considering search strategies on a sequential access file or tape. For this problem, Yao's quadrangle inequalities are not strong enough to lead to a speedup of the dynamic programming algorithm. Here, we extend the domain of efficient dynamic programming by establishing strong quadrangle inequalities which do imply a speedup.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)518-530
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Algorithms
Issue number4
StatePublished - Dec 1989

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Control and Optimization
  • Computational Mathematics
  • Computational Theory and Mathematics


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