Ill-conditionedness need not be componentwise near to ill-posedness for least squares problems
The condition number of a problem measures the sensitivity of the answer to small changes in the input, where "small" refers to some distance measure. A problem is called ill-conditioned if the condition number is large, and it is called ill-posed if the condition number is infinity. It is known that for many problems the (normwise) distance to the nearest ill-posed problem is proportional to the reciprocal of the condition number. Recently it has been shown that for linear systems and matrix inversion this is also true for componentwise distances. In this note we show that this is no longer true for least squares problems and other problems involving rectangular matrices. Problems are identified which are arbitrarily ill-conditioned (in a componentwise sense) whereas any componentwise relative perturbation less than 1 cannot produce an ill-posed problem. Bounds are given using additional information on the matrix.
Underdetermined linear systems