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The probability that two randomly selected phylogenetic trees of the same size are isomorphic is found to be asymptotic to a decreasing exponential modulated by a polynomial factor. The number of symmetrical nodes in a random phylogenetic tree of large size obeys a limiting Gaussian distribution, in the sense of both central and local limits. The probability that two random phylogenetic trees have the same number of symmetries asymptotically obeys an inverse square-root law. Precise estimates for these problems are obtained by methods of analytic combinatorics, involving bivariate generating functions, singularity analysis, and quasi-powers approximations.
This appendix contains entries arranged in logical order regarding the following topics:
Probability spaces and measure; Random variables; Transforms of distributions; Special distributions; Convergence in law.
In this book we start from probability spaces that are finite, since they arise from objects of a fixed size in some combinatorial class (see Chapter III and Appendix A.3: Combinatorial probability, p. 727 for elementary aspects), then need basic properties of continuous distributions in order to discuss asymptotic limit laws. The entries in this appendix are related principally to Chapter IX of Part C (Random Structures). They present a unified framework that encompasses discrete and continuous probability distributions alike. For further study, we recommend the superb classics of Feller [205, 206], given the author's concrete approach, and of Billingsley , whose coverage of limit distributions is of great value for analytic combinatorics.
Probability spaces and measure
An axiomatization of probability theory was discovered in the 1930s by Kolmogorov. A measurable space consists of a set Ω, called the set of elementary events or the sample set and a σ-algebra A of subsets of Ω called events (that is, a collection of sets containing ∅ and closed under complement and denumerable unions). A measure space is a measurable space endowed with a measure µ A ↦ ℝ≥0 that is additive over finite or denumerable unions of disjoint sets; in that case, elements of A are called measurable sets.
Analytic combinatorics aims to enable precise quantitative predictions of the properties of large combinatorial structures. The theory has emerged over recent decades as essential both for the analysis of algorithms and for the study of scientific models in many disciplines, including probability theory, statistical physics, computational biology, and information theory. With a careful combination of symbolic enumeration methods and complex analysis, drawing heavily on generating functions, results of sweeping generality emerge that can be applied in particular to fundamental structures such as permutations, sequences, strings, walks, paths, trees, graphs and maps. This account is the definitive treatment of the topic. The authors give full coverage of the underlying mathematics and a thorough treatment of both classical and modern applications of the theory. The text is complemented with exercises, examples, appendices and notes to aid understanding. The book can be used for an advanced undergraduate or a graduate course, or for self-study.
Analytic Combinatorics is primarily a book about combinatorics, that is, the study of finite structures built according to a finite set of rules. Analytic in the title means that we concern ourselves with methods from mathematical analysis, in particular complex and asymptotic analysis. The two fields, combinatorial enumeration and complex analysis, are organized into a coherent set of methods for the first time in this book. Our broad objective is to discover how the continuous may help us to understand the discrete and to quantify its properties.
Combinatorics is, as told by its name, the science of combinations. Given basic rules for assembling simple components, what are the properties of the resulting objects? Here, our goal is to develop methods dedicated to quantitative properties of combinatorial structures. In other words, we want to measure things. Say that we have n different items like cards or balls of different colours. In how many ways can we lay them on a table, all in one row? You certainly recognize this counting problem—finding the number of permutations of n elements.