Projected subgradient minimization versus superiorization

The projected subgradient method for constrained minimization repeatedly interlaces subgradient steps for the objective function with projections onto the feasible region, which is the intersection of closed and convex constraints sets, to regain feasibility. The latter poses a computational difficulty and, therefore, the projected subgradient method is applicable only when the feasible region is “simple to project onto”. In contrast to this, in the superiorization methodology a feasibility-seeking algorithm leads the overall process and objective function steps are interlaced into it. This makes a difference because the feasibility-seeking algorithm employs projections onto the individual constraints sets and not onto the entire feasible region. We present the two approaches side-by-side and demonstrate their performance on a problem of computerized tomography image reconstruction, posed as a constrained minimization problem aiming at finding a constraint-compatible solution that has a reduced value of the total variation of the reconstructed image.


Journal of Optimization Theory and Applications, accepted for publication.



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