Saturday, October 28, 2006

DSA and Gantt charts

So, I think I have almost covered the first-year Data Structures and Algorithms part in a third-year module. (I mean, the absolutely essential part. Sorting is n log n, etc etc. They will never know what a "binary search tree" is.) Sometimes I don't really understand their math thinking. OK you don't know geometric series, or have forgotten logarithms, or never really know what is induction. But given the recurrence T(n) = 2 T(n/2) + 1, say, isn't it "immediately obvious" that T(n/2) = 2 T(n/4) + 1?

On a completely unrelated thing, in final year projects, I think I have seen 10 different spellings of "Gantt chart"...

Thursday, October 19, 2006

25th anniversary

A prospective applicant asked "when is the department established". (You see here the time of an academic staff is spent on these things.) Fully confident that not more than three people in the department could know the answer, I sent a broadcast email to ask. This led to the discovery that the department is (depending on how you count it) having its 25th anniversary. No one notice that before...

Sunday, October 08, 2006

Algorithms textbooks

CLRS has been the standard algorithms textbook for quite many years. Yet in the last minute I decided not to list it as an "essential" textbook. The simple reason is that they refused to give me a free copy (or more precisely, ignored my request). The one I have is a first edition. It's a bit embarassing to fight with students to borrow the library copies, isn't it?