An Approximation Algorithm for l_infinity Fitting Robinson Structures to Distances

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In this paper, we present a factor 16 approximation algorithm for the following NP-hard distance fitting problem: given a finite set $X$ and a distance $d$ on $X$, find a Robinsonian distance $d_R$ on $X$ minimizing the $l_{\infty}$-error $||d-d_R||_{\infty}=\mbox{max}_{x,y\in X}\{ |d(x,y)-d_R(x,y)|\}.$ A distance $d_R$ on a finite set $X$ is Robinsonian if its matrix can be symmetrically permuted so that its elements do not decrease when moving away from the main diagonalalong any row or...