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Selected Papers on Design of Algorithms (Center for the Study of Language and Information - Lecture Notes) [Hardcover]

Donald E. Knuth
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Book Description

April 15, 2010 1575865831 978-1575865836

Donald Knuth’s influence in computer science ranges from the invention of methods for translating and defining programming languages to the creation of the TEX and METAFONT systems for desktop publishing. His award-winning textbooks have become classics that are often given credit for shaping the field; his scientific papers are widely referenced and stand as milestones of development over a wide variety of topics. The present volume, which is the seventh in a series of his collected papers, is devoted to his work on the design of new algorithms. It covers methods for numerous discrete problems such as sorting, searching, data compression, optimization, theorem-proving, and cryptography, as well as methods for controlling errors in numerical computations and for Brownian motion.


Nearly thirty of Knuth’s classic papers on the subject are collected in this book, brought up to date with extensive revisions and notes on subsequent developments. Many of these algorithms have seen wide use—for example, Knuth’s algorithm for optimum search trees, the Faller-Gallagher-Knuth algorithm for adaptive Huffman coding, the Knuth-Morris-Pratt algorithm for pattern matching, the Dijkstra-Knuth algorithm for optimum expressions, and the Knuth-Bendix algorithm for deducing the consequences of axioms. Others are pedagogically important, helping students to learn how to design new algorithms for new tasks. One or two are significant historically, as they show how things were done in computing’s early days. All are found here, together with more than forty newly created illustrations.

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Donald E. Knuth is the Fletcher Jones Professor of Computer Science emeritus at Stanford University.

Product Details

  • Series: Center for the Study of Language and Information - Lecture Notes (Book 191)
  • Hardcover: 453 pages
  • Publisher: Center for the Study of Language and Inf (April 15, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1575865831
  • ISBN-13: 978-1575865836
  • Product Dimensions: 1.3 x 5.9 x 8.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.7 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #4,756,077 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Donald E. Knuth was born on January 10, 1938 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. He studied mathematics as an undergraduate at Case Institute of Technology, where he also wrote software at the Computing Center. The Case faculty took the unprecedented step of awarding him a Master's degree together with the B.S. he received in 1960. After graduate studies at California Institute of Technology, he received a Ph.D. in Mathematics in 1963 and then remained on the mathematics faculty. Throughout this period he continued to be involved with software development, serving as consultant to Burroughs Corporation from 1960-1968 and as editor of Programming Languages for ACM publications from 1964-1967.

He joined Stanford University as Professor of Computer Science in 1968, and was appointed to Stanford's first endowed chair in computer science nine years later. As a university professor he introduced a variety of new courses into the curriculum, notably Data Structures and Concrete Mathematics. In 1993 he became Professor Emeritus of The Art of Computer Programming. He has supervised the dissertations of 28 students.

Knuth began in 1962 to prepare textbooks about programming techniques, and this work evolved into a projected seven-volume series entitled The Art of Computer Programming. Volumes 1-3 first appeared in 1968, 1969, and 1973. Having revised these three in 1997, he is now working full time on the remaining volumes. Volume 4A appeared at the beginning of 2011. More than one million copies have already been printed, including translations into ten languages.

He took ten years off from that project to work on digital typography, developing the TeX system for document preparation and the METAFONT system for alphabet design. Noteworthy by-products of those activities were the WEB and CWEB languages for structured documentation, and the accompanying methodology of Literate Programming. TeX is now used to produce most of the world's scientific literature in physics and mathematics.

His research papers have been instrumental in establishing several subareas of computer science and software engineering: LR(k) parsing; attribute grammars; the Knuth-Bendix algorithm for axiomatic reasoning; empirical studies of user programs and profiles; analysis of algorithms. In general, his works have been directed towards the search for a proper balance between theory and practice.

Professor Knuth received the ACM Turing Award in 1974 and became a Fellow of the British Computer Society in 1980, an Honorary Member of the IEEE in 1982. He is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the National Academy of Sciences, and the National Academy of Engineering; he is also a foreign associate of l'Academie des Sciences (Paris), Det Norske Videnskaps-Akademi (Oslo), Bayerische Akademie der Wissenschaften (Munich), the Royal Society (London), and Rossiiskaya Akademia Nauk (Moscow). He holds five patents and has published approximately 160 papers in addition to his 28 books. He received the Medal of Science from President Carter in 1979, the American Mathematical Society's Steele Prize for expository writing in 1986, the New York Academy of Sciences Award in 1987, the J.D. Warnier Prize for software methodology in 1989, the Adelskøld Medal from the Swedish Academy of Sciences in 1994, the Harvey Prize from the Technion in 1995, and the Kyoto Prize for advanced technology in 1996. He was a charter recipient of the IEEE Computer Pioneer Award in 1982, after having received the IEEE Computer Society's W. Wallace McDowell Award in 1980; he received the IEEE's John von Neumann Medal in 1995. He holds honorary doctorates from Oxford University, the University of Paris, St. Petersburg University, and more than a dozen colleges and universities in America.

Professor Knuth lives on the Stanford campus with his wife, Jill. They have two children, John and Jennifer. Music is his main avocation.

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5.0 out of 5 stars Do you want to dig deeper into Algorithm Design December 22, 2013
By hung le
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This book is amazing. A collection of papers that have had a huge impact on the development of algorithm design are presented in a systematic way. It should be placed on your bookshelf.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Over my head, but worth it. January 24, 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I confess on most of these, I would skim and then really read the addendum section. I do wish there was a more prescriptive way on designing algorithms that could be gleaned from this book. Maybe there is, and I just don't grasp it yet. Regardless, this is an interesting view into detailed analysis of programming.
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