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View Full Version : Explain O(n) notation

Jeremy G
06-24-2004, 02:56 AM
Surprisingly in the many math courses I've been forced to take for my cs degree I haven't come accross O(n). At least not that I remember, perhaps it's the context thats throwing me off.

Any one feel like explaining it?

okinrus
06-24-2004, 03:28 AM
When you hear "O" you can pretty much substitute uppebound disregarding constant factor. For instance, you can say an algorithm is O(n^2) and you know that a function for the time(t) and some nonnegative constant c 0 < f(t) <= c * n^2.

okinrus
06-24-2004, 03:36 AM
One restriction that I forgot to mention is that it's possible to restrict the use of n so that n is greater than n_0. This way a function can behave like n^3 for n < 10 but if for n > 10 it behaves like n^2 the bound is O(n^2)(it is still also n^3).

anonytmouse
06-24-2004, 03:58 AM
Time Flies Like an Arrow, but Time Algorithms with Big-O (http://www.cprogramming.com/codej/issue5.html#article2)

Jeremy G
06-24-2004, 02:50 PM
Lame, some on actually gave me negative reputation for this thread. Some people are simply jackasses.