AlgorithmEfficiency.pdf

# AlgorithmEfficiency.pdf - Algorithm Efficiency COMP 182...

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Algorithm Efficiency COMP 182: Algorithmic Thinking Luay Nakhleh Department of Computer Science Rice University Spring 2015

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All Correct Algorithms Are Not Created Equal When presented with a set of correct algorithms for a certain problem, it is natural to choose the most efficient one(s) out of these algorithms. (In some cases, we may opt for an algorithm X that’s a bit slower than algorithm Y, but that is much, much easier to implement than Y.) Efficiency: Time: how fast an algorithm runs Space: how much extra space the algorithm requires There’s often a trade-off between the two.
It’s All a Function of the Input’s Size We often investigate the algorithm’s complexity (or, efficiency) in terms of some parameter n that indicates the algorithm’s input size For example, for an algorithm that sorts a list of numbers, the input’s size is the number of elements in the list. For some algorithms, more than one parameter may be needed to indicates the size of their inputs. For the algorithm IsBipartite, the input size is given by the number of nodes if the graph is represented as an adjacency matrix, whereas the input size is given by the number of nodes and number of edges if the graph is represented by an adjacency list.

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It’s All a Function of the Input’s Size Sometimes, more than one choice of a parameter indicating the input size may be possible For an algorithm that multiplies two square matrices, one choice is n, the order of the matrix, and another is N, the total number of entries in the matrix. Notice that the relation between n and N is easy to establish, so switching between them is straightforward (yet results in different qualitative statements about the efficiency of the algorithm). When the matrices being multiplied are not square, N would be more appropriate.
It’s All a Function of the Input’s Size Question: For an algorithm that tests whether a nonnegative integer p is prime, what is the input size?

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Units for Measuring Running Time We’d like to use a measure that does not depend on extraneous factors such as the speed of a particular computer, dependence on the
• Spring '15
• Analysis of algorithms, Computational complexity theory, Asymptotic Analysis of Algorithms, terms of some parameter n

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