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My favorite graphs

Jonathan Gross, graph theory professor at Columbia University, has composed the following graph
theory song:
My Favorite Graphs (sung to the tune of My Favorite Things from Sound of Music)

Graph theory warm-up!

Labeled, bipartite, complete and directed;


transitive, rigid, and strongly connected.
Tournaments, trees; null and empty for laughs;
These are a few of my favorite graphs ...

Math 104, Graph Theory


Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Colors and voltages, brightly adorning,


new special cases that greet each new morning.
Hamilton circuits thru each vertex go,
Minimum cut equals maximum flow ...
Think of Polya, Kuratowski -Heawood, Cayley, and Euler before.
Inspiring us now to work hard to derive
graph theorems evermore.

Basic notation

Subgraphs and subsets of vertices


E(G), E
m, |E(G)|, (G), e(G), size of G

(G) = min degree of G


(G) = max degree of G

V (G), V
n, |V (G)|, (G), n(G), order of G

{u, v} E
uv E
u v
u N (v)

1
5

3
graph G

subgraph

Subgraphs and subsets of vertices

Subgraphs and subsets of vertices

1
5

graph G

1
5

graph G

spanning
subgraph

Subgraphs and subsets of vertices

G [{1, 3, 4, 6}]

Subgraphs and subsets of vertices


1

S = {1, 4}

3
graph G

induced subgraph

1
5

independent set

S = {3, 4, 6}

3
graph G

clique

Graph complement

Graph complement

1
5

1
2

1
2

graph G

graph G

Isomorphism

1
2

1
2

3
graph G

V (G) = V (H)
but {1, 2} E(G)
and {1, 2} E(H)

4
NO

YES

G and H have the


same structure
(redraw G, ignore
the labels)

NO

but {1, 2} E(G)


and {1, 2} E(H)

G and H are not equal

YES

V (G) = V (H)

1
4

3
graph G

graph H

5
Are these graphs
the same?

Are these graphs the


same?

complete graph
on 6 vertices, K6

Same or different?

3
graph H

G and H have the


same structure
(redraw G, ignore
the labels)

1
4

G and H are isomorphic

Graph fundamentals
Isomorphisms and automorphisms
Definition A graph G is isomorphic to H if there exists a bijection
f : V (G) ! V (H) such that uv 2 E(G) if and only if f (u)f (v) 2 E(H).
Example

f (1) = a
f (2) = b
f (3) = d
f (4) = c

How can we prove two graphs are not isomorphic?


We could check all n! bijections to discover this fact. But even for
small values of n (such as n = 100), n! is unmanageably large (larger
than the # of particles in the universe!), so this brute force approach
is not feasible.
We can find some structural property in which the two graphs dier;
e.g., one graph has a vertex of degree 5 and the other does not.
It may not be easy to find an isomorphism between two graphs or prove
that none exists. However, once an isomorphism f has been found, it is
straight forward to verify that f is indeed an isomorphism: we need only
check that for each of the n2 pairs of vertices u, v,
uv 2 E(G) () f (u)f (v) 2 E(H).1

Curiously, the graph isomorphism problem is one of only a few problems in computational complexity theory
belonging to NP, but not known to belong to either of its well-known subsets: P and NP-complete.
Math 104 - Prof. Kindred - Lecture 1

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Definition An automorphism of G is an isomorphism from G to itself.


3

Example

This graph has 4 automorphisms.


1

An automorphism reflects symmetry in a graph.

An important graph class bipartite graphs


Recall the following definition from set theory...
Definition A partition of a set A is a collection of pairwise disjoint
subsets A1, A2, . . . , Ak of A whose union is A. The sets A1, A2, . . . , Ak are
often called parts or partite sets.
Example The set of even integers and the set of odd integers partition
Z.
Now were ready to define a very important class of graphs: bipartite!
Example:
Definition A graph G is bipartite if we can
partition V (G) into two independent sets2 X
and Y , i.e., V (G) = X [ Y and X \ Y = ;.
The sets X, Y are called a bipartition of G.

x1
x2
x3

y1

y2

x4

Problem

T/F: for a bipartite graph G with bipartition X, Y ,


max size of an independent set in G = max{|X|, |Y |}?

One of these sets may be empty.

Math 104 - Prof. Kindred - Lecture 1

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False! Consider the following graph on six vertices:

Complete + bipartite = ...


Definition A complete bipartite graph is a bipartite graph such that
two vertices are adjacent if and only if they are in dierent parts of the bipartition. It is denoted Ka,b if there are a vtcs. in one part of the bipartition
and b vtcs. in the other.
Example

K3,3

Problem

How many vertices in Ka,b? How many edges?


=)

a + b vertices and ab edges.

How can we generalize complete bipartite graphs?


Definition A complete multipartite graph is a graph whose vtcs. can
be partitioned into into sets so that u v if and only if u and v belong to
dierent parts of the partition.
Example

K2,2,3
Math 104 - Prof. Kindred - Lecture 1

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