Discuss at least three applications of graph theory in the field of computer sciences?
Graphs are among the most ubiquitous models of both natural and human-made structures. They can be used to model many types of relations and process dynamics in physical, biological and social systems. Many problems of practical interest can be represented by graphs.
In computer science, graphs are used to represent networks of communication, data organization, computational devices, the flow of computation, etc. One practical example: The link structure of a website could be represented by a directed graph. The vertices are the web pages available at the website and a directed edge from page A to page B exists if and only if A contains a link to B. A similar approach can be taken to problems in travel, biology, computer chip design, and many other fields. The development of algorithms to handle graphs is therefore of major interest in computer science. There, the transformation of graphs is often formalized and represented by graph rewrite systems. They are either directly used or properties of the rewrite systems (e.g. confluence) are studied. Complementary to graph transformation systems focussing on rule-based in-memory manipulation of graphs are graph databases geared towards transaction-safe, persistent storing and querying of graph-structured data.
Graph-theoretic methods, in various forms, have proven particularly useful in linguistics, since natural language often lends itself well to discrete structure. Traditionally, syntax and compositional semantics follow tree-based structures, whose expressive power lies in the Principle of Compositionality, modeled in a hierarchical graph. More contemporary approaches such as Head-driven phrase structure grammar (HPSG) model syntactic constructions via the unification of typed feature structures, which are directed acyclic graphs. Within lexical semantics, especially as applied to computers, modeling word meaning is easier when a given word is understood in terms of related words; semantic networks are therefore important in computational linguistics. Still other methods in phonology (e.g. Optimality Theory, which uses lattice graphs) and morphology (e.g. finite-state morphology, using finite-state transducers) are common in the analysis of language as a graph. Indeed, the usefulness of this area of mathematics to linguistics has borne organizations such as TextGraphs, as well as various 'Net' projects, such as WordNet, VerbNet, and others.
Graph theory is also used to study molecules in chemistry and physics. In condensed matter physics, the three dimensional structure of complicated simulated atomic structures can be studied quantitatively by gathering statistics on graph-theoretic properties related to the topology of the atoms. For example, Franzblau's shortest-path (SP) rings. In chemistry a graph makes a natural model for a molecule, where vertices represent atoms and edges bonds. This approach is especially used in computer processing of molecular structures, ranging from chemical editors to database searching. In statistical physics, graphs can represent local connections between interacting parts of a system, as well as the dynamics of a physical process on such systems.
Graph theory is also widely used in sociology as a way, for example, to measure actors' prestige or to explore diffusion mechanisms, notably through the use of social network analysis software. Under the umbrella of Social Network graphs there are many different types of graphs: Starting with the Acquaintanceship and Friendship Graphs, these graphs are useful for representing whether n people know each other. next there is the influence graph. This graph is used to model whether certain people can influence the behavior of others. Finally there's a collaboration graph which models whether two people work together in a particular way. The measure of an actors' prestige mentioned above is an example of this, other popular examples include the Erdős number and Six Degrees Of Separation
Likewise, graph theory is useful in biology and conservation efforts where a vertex can represent regions where certain species exist (or habitats) and the edges represent migration paths, or movement between the regions. This information is important when looking at breeding patterns or tracking the spread of disease, parasites or how changes to the movement can affect other species.
In mathematics, graphs are useful in geometry and certain parts of topology, e.g. Knot Theory. Algebraic graph theory has close links with group theory.
A graph structure can be extended by assigning a weight to each edge of the graph. Graphs with weights, or weighted graphs, are used to represent structures in which pairwise connections have some numerical values. For example if a graph represents a road network, the weights could represent the length of each road.
A digraph with weighted edges in the context of graph theory is called a network. Network analysis have many practical applications, for example, to model and analyze traffic networks. Applications of network analysis split broadly into three categories:
First, analysis to determine structural properties of a network, such as the distribution of vertex degrees and the diameter of the graph. A vast number of graph measures exist, and the production of useful ones for various domains remains an active area of research.
Second, analysis to find a measurable quantity within the network, for example, for a transportation network, the level of vehicular flow within any portion of it.
Third, analysis of dynamical properties of networks. Read More: ...