We survey a number of open problems in theoretical and applied graph drawing.
We show that graphs with maximum degree four have geometric thickness at most two, by partitioning them into degree two subgraphs and applying simultaneous embedding techniques.
In honor of artist Mark Lombardi, we define a Lombardi drawing to be a drawing of a graph in which the edges are drawn as circular arcs and at each vertex they are equally spaced around the vertex so as to achieve the best possible angular resolution. We describe algorithms for constructing Lombardi drawings of regular graphs, 2-degenerate graphs, graphs with rotational symmetry, and several types of planar graphs. A program for the rotationally symmetric case, the Lombardi Spirograph, is available online.
We consider balloon drawings of trees, in which each subtree of the root is drawn recursively within a disk, and these disks are arranged radially around the root, with the edges at each node spaced equally around the node so as to achieve the best possible angular resolution. If we are allowed to permute the children of each node, then we show that a drawing of this type can be made in which all edges are straight line segments and the area of the drawing is a polynomial multiple of the shortest edge length. However, if the child ordering is prescribed, exponential area might be necessary. We show that, if we relax the requirement of straight line edges and draw the edges as circular arcs (a style we call Lombardi drawing) then even with a prescribed child ordering we can achieve polynomial area.
We extend Lombardi drawing (in which each edge is a circular arc and the edges incident to a vertex must be equally spaced around it) to drawings in which edges are composed of multiple arcs, and we investigate the graphs that can be drawn in this more relaxed framework.
The balanced circle packings of the title are systems of interior-disjoint circles, whose tangencies represent the given graph, and whose radii are all within a polynomial factor of each other. We show that these packings always exist for trees, cactus graphs, outerpaths, k-outerplanar graphs of bounded degree when k is at most logarithmic, and planar graphs of bounded treedepth. The treedepth result uses a new construction of inversive-distance circle packings.
We study the graphs formed by non-crossing circular arcs in the plane, having a vertex for each arc and an edge for each point where an arc endpoint touches the interior of another arc.
We study the problem of splitting the vertices of a given graph into a bounded number of sub-vertices (with each edge attaching to one of the sub-vertices) in order to make the resulting graph planar. It is NP-complete, but can be approximated to within a constant factor, and is fixed-parameter tractable in the treewidth.
Co-authors – Publications – David Eppstein – Theory Group – Inf. & Comp. Sci. – UC Irvine
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