Algorithms and OOD (CSC 207 2013F) : Outlines

Outline 19: Analyzing Algorithms

Held: Tuesday, 1 October 2013

Back to Outline 18 - Building Your First App (2). On to Outline 20 - Linear and Binary Search.


We consider ways, formal and informal, to describe the running time of algorithms.

Related Pages



A Motivating Problem: Exponentiation

Here's a simple iterative solution using a for loop

double result = 1.0;
for (int i = 0; i < y; i++)
    result *= x;

Here's a divide and conquer solution.

 To compute x^y
 If y is 0
   return 1
 Else if y is odd
   return x*x^(y-1)
 Else if y is even
   return square(x^(y/2))

Comparing Algorithms

Potential Problems

Is there an exact number we can provide for the running time of an algorithm? Surprisingly, no.

Asymptotic Analysis

Big-O Formalized

Implications of Big-O

You can formally prove all of the following (and probably will, in some course)

Doing Informal Asymptotic Analysis

Recurrence Relations

Let's try to figure out the running time of a few recursive algorithms given descriptions of the relationships of running times.

I find it easiest to "work out" some example inputs and then to look for patterns.

Experimental Analysis

Copyright (c) 2013 Samuel A. Rebelsky.

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