A mathematical characterization of the difficulty of a mathematical problem which describes the resources required by a computing machine to solve the problem. The mathematical study of such characterizations is called computational complexity theory and is important in many branches of theoretical computer science, especially cryptography.
The Past and Future of the Dictionary
Samuel Johnson’s A Dictionary of the English Language, published in 1775, was the first comprehensive dictionary in English. Before this time, dictionaries were often glossaries of difficult words, neglecting more basic terms. However Johnson’s dictionary aimed to cover general vocabulary and everyday usage, not just the “hard” words. The Century Dictionary, published between 1889 and 1891, grew from this tradition. Encyclopedia Britannica describes it as …
Around the Web: Norwegian Books, Axes, and ALL CAPS
In case you missed it because of Thanksgiving, the first book published in America sold (pictured) for $14 million. Is the period pissed? Computational analysis supports this hypothesis. Also, ALL CAPS aren’t as angry as they used to be. Newsweek is coming back into print. Meanwhile Norway is digitizing all Norwegian books. Related: the hilarious accidents of Google Books digitization. An obituary for the letter e. …
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