# Tagged Questions

Optimization is the process of choosing the "best" value among possible values. They are often formulated as questions on the minimization/maximization of functions, with or without constraints.

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### The median minimizes the sum of absolute deviations

Suppose we have a set $S$ of real numbers. Show that $$\sum_{s\in S}|s-x|$$ is minimal if $x$ is equal to the median. This is a sample exam question of one of the exams that I need to take and ...
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### Find the maximum of $f(x)=x^{1/x}$

Find the maximum of the function $$f(x)=x^{1/x}$$ and the value of $x$ which gives the maximum value?
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### Minimum of $|az_x-bz_y|$

I am trying to minimize the following function: \begin{align} &f(z_x,z_y)=|az_x-bz_y| \\ &\text{ s.t. } z_x,z_y \in \mathbb{Z},1 \le z_x \le N_x \text{ and } 1 \le z_y \le N_y \text{ and } a,...
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### Not so easy optimization of variables?

What is the maximum value of $x^2+y^2$, where $(x,y)$ are solutions to $2x^2+5xy+3y^2=2$ and $6x^2+8xy+4y^2=3$. (calculus is not allowed). I tried everything I could but whenever I got for example $or$...
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### What is the optimal path between $2$ fixed points around an invisible obstructing wall?

Every day you walk from point A to point B, which are $3$ miles apart. There is a $50$% chance each walk that there is an invisible wall somewhere strictly between the two points (never at A or B). ...
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### How do Lagrange multipliers work to find the lowest value of a function subject to a constraint?

I have been using Lagrange multipliers in constrained optimization problems, but I don't see how they actually work to simultaneously satisfy the constraint and find the lowest possible value of an ...
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### Show that there's a minimum spanning tree if all edges have different costs

Show that there's a unique minimum spanning tree (MST) in case the edges' weights are pairwise different $(w(e)\neq w(f) \text{ for } e\neq f)$. I thought that the proof can be done for example by ...
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### Trace minimization with constraints

For positive semi-definite matrices $A,B$, how can I find an $X$ that minimizes $\text{Trace}(AX^TBX$) under 'either' one of these constraints: a) Sum of squares of Euclidean-distances between pairs ...