Prof. Dr. Tobias Friedrich

Topics in Algorithms, Graphs and Probabilities

MSc Seminar - Summer 2024


What is this course? In this course, you will encounter research topics in the world of theoretical computer science, at the intersection of algorithms, graphs, and probabilities.

What will be expected of you? You will choose one topic from a list of topics. The topics will be discussed in the first meeting (8th of April) and chosen in the second. You will then have to prepare a talk that you will present in one of the slots of this course.

What is the goal of this course? This course aims to familiarize you with the concepts of reading, writing, presenting, and teaching in the scientific world. You will choose one or more recently published papers, on a particular topic, which you will have to carefully understand, present to the class, and write a report on. Your presentation will be a `teaching presentation': it should include an interactive exercise.

What do I need to attend this course? The topics this year will revolve around three themes: Algorithms, Graphs, and Probabilities. The supervisors will provide several topics, with relevant recent publications, and are also open to topic propositions from you. Knowledge of algorithms, graphs, and probabilities will be helpful, but it is also important to have a curious mind and a willingness to learn.

We also expect from the students to enjoy reasoning, as well as critical and abstract thinking.

How does the grading work? You will be graded on three aspects: the presentation, the interactive exercise, and the write-up. On the day of your presentation where you will teach the other students with your presentation, and have them participate using the exercise (be creative!). The write-up is a relatively short report (around 5 pages) about your topic that you will hand in; a good or a bad write up can increase or decrease your grade by one step.

Anything else? Yes, a few other things. The language of the presentation, the exercise and the write-up is English. The material that will be provided by your supervisors will also be in English. Neither of the lecturers are native german speakers, so good English (writing and reading) skills are expected from you.


The course will be organised via the Moodle. You can log in with your usual HPI-Login, and register for the course.

Weekly meeting

  • Mondays: 13:30-15:00 in K-1.02


The seminar is offered by the Chair for Algorithm Engineering. The following people are involved:

Chair for Algorithm Engineering
Hasso Plattner Institute

Office: K-2.07

E-mail: georgios.skretas(at)hpi.de


Chair for Algorithm Engineering
Hasso Plattner Institute

Office: K-2.06

Email: samuel.baguley(at)hpi.de