Online primal-dual algorithms for maximizing ad-auctions revenue

Niv Buchbinder, Kamal Jain, Joseph Naor

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review


We study the online ad-auctions problem introduced by Mehta et al. [15]. We design a (1-1/e)-competitive (optimal) algorithm for the problem, which is based on a clean primal-dual approach, matching the competitive factor obtained in [15]. Our basic algorithm along with its analysis are very simple. Our results are based on a unified approach developed earlier for the design of online algorithms [7,8]. In particular, the analysis uses weak duality rather than a tailor made (i.e., problem specific) potential function. We show that this approach is useful for analyzing other classical online algorithms such as ski rental and the TCP-acknowledgement problem. We are confident that the primal-dual method will prove useful in other online scenarios as well. The primal-dual approach enables us to extend our basic ad-auctions algorithm in a straight forward manner to scenarios in which additional information is available, yielding improved worst case competitive factors. In particular, a scenario in which additional stochastic information is available to the algorithm, a scenario in which the number of interested buyers in each product is bounded by some small number d, and a general risk management framework.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationAlgorithms - ESA 2007 - 15th Annual European Symposium, Proceedings
PublisherSpringer Verlag
Number of pages12
ISBN (Print)9783540755197
StatePublished - 2007
Externally publishedYes
Event15th Annual European Symposium on Algorithms, ESA 2007 - Eilat, Israel
Duration: 8 Oct 200710 Oct 2007

Publication series

NameLecture Notes in Computer Science (including subseries Lecture Notes in Artificial Intelligence and Lecture Notes in Bioinformatics)
Volume4698 LNCS
ISSN (Print)0302-9743
ISSN (Electronic)1611-3349


Conference15th Annual European Symposium on Algorithms, ESA 2007


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