Title:

On the complexity of matrix multiplication

The evaluation of the product of two matrices can be very computationally expensive. The multiplication of two n×n matrices, using the “default” algorithm can take O(n3) field operations in the underlying field k. It is therefore desirable to find algorithms to reduce the “cost” of multiplying two matrices together. If multiplication of two n × n matrices can be obtained in O(nα) operations, the least upper bound for α is called the exponent of matrix multiplication and is denoted by ω. A bound for ω < 3 was found in 1968 by Strassen in his algorithm. He found that multiplication of two 2 × 2 matrices could be obtained in 7 multiplications in the underlying field k, as opposed to the 8 required to do the same multiplication previously. Using recursion, we are able to show that ω ≤ log2 7 < 2.8074, which is better than the value of 3 we had previously. In chapter 1, we look at various techniques that have been found for reducing ω. These include Pan’s Trilinear Aggregation, Bini’s Border Rank and Sch¨onhage’s Asymptotic Sum inequality. In chapter 2, we look in detail at the current best estimate of ω found by Coppersmith and Winograd. We also propose a different method of evaluating the “value” of trilinear forms. Chapters 3 and 4 build on the work of Coppersmith and Winograd and examine how cubing and raising to the fourth power of Coppersmith and Winograd’s “complicated” algorithm affect the value of ω, if at all. Finally, in chapter 5, we look at the GroupTheoretic context proposed by Cohn and Umans, and see how we can derive some of Coppersmith and Winograd’s values using this method, as well as showing how working in this context can perhaps be more conducive to showing ω = 2.
