A software engineering perspective on algorithmicsA software engineering perspective on algorithmics

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 Author Weihe, Karsten Source ACM Digital Library Content type Text Publisher Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) File Format PDF Copyright Year ©2001 Language English
 Subject Domain (in DDC) Computer science, information & general works ♦ Data processing & computer science Subject Keyword Algorithm engineering Abstract An algorithm component is an implementation of an algorithm which is not intended to be a stand-alone module, but to perform a specific task within a large software package or even within several distinct software packages. Therefore, the design of algorithm components must also incorporate software-engineering aspects. A key design goal is adaptability. This goal is important for maintenance throughout a project, prototypical development, and reuse in new, unforseen contexts. From a theoretical viewpoint most algorithms apply to a range of possible use scenarios. Ideally, each algorithm is implemented by one algorithm component, which is easily, safely, and efficiently adaptable to all of these contexts.Various techniques have been developed for the design and implementation of algorithm components. However, a common basis for systematic, detailed evaluations and comparisons in view of the $\textit{real}$ practical needs is still missing. Basically, this means a set of concrete criteria, which specify what sort of adaptability is $\textit{really}$ required in practice, and which are well-justified by convincing, representative use scenarios.This paper is intended to be a first “milestone” on the way towards such a system of criteria. We will present a set of concrete goals, which are general and problem-independent and might appear ubiquitously in the algorithmic realm. These goals are illustrated, motivated, and justified by an extensive requirements analysis for a particular algorithm from a particular algorithmic domain: Dijkstra's algorithm for shortest paths in networks.Clearly, the field of algorithmics might be too versatile to allow a comprehensive, yet concise set of precise, justified criteria. Even a domain as restricted as graph and network algorithms includes aspects that are not fully understood. The analysis will include a discussion of the limits of the case study and the scope of the goals. The case study was chosen because it seems to be close to the “boderline” between the aspects that are well understood and the aspects that are not. Hence, this example may well serve as an“acid test” for programming techniques in view of the state of the art. ISSN 03600300 Age Range 18 to 22 years ♦ above 22 year Educational Use Research Education Level UG and PG Learning Resource Type Article Publisher Date 2001-03-01 Publisher Place New York e-ISSN 15577341 Journal ACM Computing Surveys (CSUR) Volume Number 33 Issue Number 1 Page Count 46 Starting Page 89 Ending Page 134

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Source: ACM Digital Library