Unifying Known Lower Bounds via Geometric Complexity Theory
We show that most arithmetic circuit lower bounds and relations between lower bounds naturally fit into the representation-theoretic framework suggested by geometric complexity theory (GCT), including: the partial derivatives technique (Nisan-Wigderson), the results of Razborov and Smolensky on AC^0[p], multilinear formula and circuit size lower bounds (Raz et al.), the degree bound (Strassen, Baur-Strassen), the connected components technique (Ben-Or), depth 3 arithmetic circuit lower bounds
... er finite fields (Grigoriev-Karpinski), lower bounds on permanent versus determinant (Mignon-Ressayre, Landsberg-Manivel-Ressayre), lower bounds on matrix multiplication (Bürgisser-Ikenmeyer) (these last two were already known to fit into GCT), the chasms at depth 3 and 4 (Gupta-Kayal-Kamath-Saptharishi; Agrawal-Vinay; Koiran), matrix rigidity (Valiant) and others. That is, the original proofs, with what is often just a little extra work, already provide representation-theoretic obstructions in the sense of GCT for their respective lower bounds. This enables us to expose a new viewpoint on GCT, whereby it is a natural unification and broad generalization of known results. It also shows that the framework of GCT is at least as powerful as known methods, and gives many new proofs-of-concept that GCT can indeed provide significant asymptotic lower bounds. This new viewpoint also opens up the possibility of fruitful two-way interactions between previous results and the new methods of GCT; we provide several concrete suggestions of such interactions. For example, the representation-theoretic viewpoint of GCT naturally provides new properties to consider in the search for new lower bounds.