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Algorithmics: The Spirit of Computing (3rd Edition) Paperback – June 11, 2004

ISBN-13: 978-0321117847 ISBN-10: 0321117840 Edition: 3rd

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Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

From a review of the first edition:

¿This book is a veritable tour de force. Harel writes with uncommon verve, clarity and imagination.'

¿Through the use of tantalizing questions and aptly chosen and often amusing examples, the author transmits to the reader the excitement and intellectual satisfaction of computer science research. Without the use of formal mathematics and without any sacrifice of intellectual integrity, he conveys to the general reader the profound principles on which computer science is founded and which hitherto were only accessible in abstruse and esoteric textbooks and papers.'

¿This is scientific writing at its best.'

Dr Stan Scott, Queen's University Belfast. The Times Higher Education Supplement.

This book tells the story of the concepts, ideas, methods and results fundamental to computer science, in a form independent of the details of specific computers, languages and formalisms. It concerns the true 'spirit' of computers; with the 'recipes' that make them tick - their algorithms.

New to this edition

  • Chapters on software engineering and on reactive systems.
  • Thoroughly revised chapter on programming languages.
  • New material on quantum and molecular computing.
  • Whole text thoroughly updated to include new material on many topics, including abstract data types, the object-oriented paradigm, primality testing, and system verification and validation.

David Harel is Professor and Dean of the Faculty of Mathematics and Computer Science at the Weizmann Institute of Science. He is renowned for outstanding research in many areas of the field, and has recently been awarded the Israel Prize in Computer Science.

Yishai Feldman is on the faculty of the Efi Arazi School of Computer Science at the Interdisciplinary Centre, Herzliya. He specializes in the use of atificial-intelligence techniques in software engineering and its real-world applications.

About the Author

About David Harel

David Harel is a professor and chairman of the Applied Mathematics and Computer Science Department at the Weizmann Institute of Science and he is one of the founders of Ad-Cad, Inc. Renowned for outstanding research in several areas of computer science, Dr. Harel is ideally qualified to convey a thorough understanding of the science of computing to the inquiring reader.



0201504014AB04062001 --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 536 pages
  • Publisher: Addison-Wesley; 3 edition (June 11, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0321117840
  • ISBN-13: 978-0321117847
  • Product Dimensions: 7.3 x 1.1 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,613,252 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

4.1 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

21 of 21 people found the following review helpful By Optimistix on November 5, 2001
Format: Paperback
As the author says, the members of the research community of Computer
Science have done their discipline a disservice by not making any
special efforts to write accessible accounts of the field, as a result
of which the 'layman' still has little idea of what goes on 'under the
hood', so to say.
He has therefore undertaken the challenging task of presenting the basic
ideas underpinning Computer Science in a way that's easy for the general
reader to grasp. He sets out to present the essential notions of
Algorithms and data structures, Turing machines, Finite state machines,
Decidability, Computability, Complexity, NP-completeness, Correctness,
Parallel algorithms, Probabilistic algorithms, and more with a minimum
of mathematics and yet without sacrificing intellectual rigour - and
most admirably, succeeds in doing so.
David Harel is a big name in Theoretical Computer Science, one of the
leading researchers, and chairman of the Applied Mathematics and
Computer Science Department at the Weizmann Institute of Science.
What made my mind up about reading this book were the strongly encouraging
remarks on the back cover by Aho & Hopcroft, two of the foremost authors
and researchers in the field, who've written some great textbooks themselves.
This book presents all the basic fundamental ideas of the theory of computation,
using as little maths as possible. Yet, the intellectual rigour is never
compromised, which means that the reader truly gets a flavour of how a
Computer Scientist thinks, and how much fun it can be.
Read more ›
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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26 of 28 people found the following review helpful By Scorn on April 24, 2003
Format: Paperback
This book is the most amazing book on algorithms I've read. The concepts are so well explained that moving to "An introduction to Algorithms by Cormen, Rivest" will be very easy.
I come from a non-computer science background. When I started my coursework in Computer Science I was intimidated with Cormen - (although that IS THE MOST AUTHORITATIVE and a complete text!) until I found Harel.
Harel covers ALL the key aspects of algorithms and quite a bit of Data Structs too. He explains all the concepts in a non-mathematical, yet intellectually stimulating manner.One can literally read through the book in single day and gain insight into the most difficult topics like, unsolvable problems, hard problems, NP and NP complete problems.
On a side note - I pity those reviewers who returned the masterpiece and took objection to Bible quotes. Please grow up and look at what the book has to offer instead of taking objection to such insignificant embellishments
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Optimistix on November 5, 2001
Format: Paperback
As the author says, the members of the research community of Computer
Science have done their discipline a disservice by not making any
special efforts to write accessible accounts of the field, as a result
of which the 'layman' still has little idea of what goes on 'under the
hood', so to say.
He has therefore undertaken the challenging task of presenting the basic
ideas underpinning Computer Science in a way that's easy for the general
reader to grasp. He sets out to present the essential notions of
Algorithms and data structures, Turing machines, Finite state machines,
Decidability, Computability, Complexity, NP-completeness, Correctness,
Parallel algorithms, Probabilistic algorithms, and more with a minimum
of mathematics and yet without sacrificing intellectual rigour - and
most admirably, succeeds in doing so.
David Harel is a big name in Theoretical Computer Science, one of the
leading researchers, and chairman of the Applied Mathematics and
Computer Science Department at the Weizmann Institute of Science.
What made my mind up about reading this book were the strongly encouraging
remarks on the back cover by Aho & Hopcroft, two of the foremost authors
and researchers in the field, who've written some great textbooks themselves.
This book presents all the basic fundamental ideas of the theory of computation,
using as little maths as possible. Yet, the intellectual rigour is never
compromised, which means that the reader truly gets a flavour of how a
Computer Scientist thinks, and how much fun it can be.
Read more ›
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
14 of 14 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on September 3, 1999
Format: Paperback
This is a truly magnificent book. It comprehensively covers most of the topics in the analysis and design of alogorithms with no mathematical burden to hamper you from getting through this subjet. Later on, you will most probably need a more intensive and mathmetical-analysis oriented book but be sure this second book will be far more easy to go through after you have have finished the "Algorithmics" book. Enjoy it.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on April 13, 1999
Format: Paperback
This book is just fantastic. It gives a perfect introduction to the most important aspects of algorithm design, correctness, complexity, P vs NP, etc. It has solid foundations in the theory, and brings these difficult concepts within reach of the average programmer, in an easily readable style. Kudos to the author.
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