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Constantinos Daskalakis: Testing Properties of Distributions

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Published on Oct 12, 2015

Abstract: Given samples from an unknown distribution, p, is it possible to distinguish whether p belongs to some class of distributions C versus p being far from every distribution in C, by at least ε in total variation distance? This fundamental question has received substantial attention in Statistics and Computer Science. Nevertheless, even for basic classes of distributions such as monotone, log-concave, unimodal, or product, the optimal sample complexity is unknown. We provide optimal testers for these families.

(joint work with Jayadev Acharya and Gautam Kamath)

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