Google Research

Sharper bounds and structural results for minimally nonlinear 0-1 matrices

The Electronic Journal of Combinatorics (2020)

Abstract

The extremal function $ex(n, P)$ is the maximum possible number of ones in any 0-1 matrix with $n$ rows and $n$ columns that avoids $P$. A 0-1 matrix $P$ is called minimally nonlinear if $ex(n, P) = \omega(n)$ but $ex(n, P') = O(n)$ for every $P'$ that is contained in $P$ but not equal to $P$.

Bounds on the number of ones and the number of columns in a minimally nonlinear 0-1 matrix with $k$ rows were found in (CrowdMath, 2018). In this paper, we improve the upper bound on the number of ones in a minimally nonlinear 0-1 matrix with $k$ rows from $5k-3$ to $4k-4$. As a corollary, this improves the upper bound on the number of columns in a minimally nonlinear 0-1 matrix with $k$ rows from $4k-2$ to $4k-4$.

We also prove that there are not more than four ones in the top and bottom rows of a minimally nonlinear matrix and that there are not more than six ones in any other row of a minimally nonlinear matrix. Furthermore, we prove that if a minimally nonlinear 0-1 matrix has ones in the same row with exactly $d$ columns between them, then within these columns there are at most $2d-1$ rows above and $2d-1$ rows below with ones.

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