Spring 2021

algorithms final project

Your final project should be a numerical investigation and a short paper on a problem and algorithm similar to the ideas we've studied this semester: data structures, sorting, graph search, game search, and all that. Please include a discussion of the general ideas, the expected O() efficiency, a graph of some numerical experiments showing that behavior, and a bibliography. As with other assignments, you may use code from online sources as long as you are (a) quoting your sources and (b) adapting that code for this project and (c) making it clear that you understand what's what and are not just copy-pasting someone else's work.

Some possible topics include

In addition to these ideas, you can find other possible topics in Skienna's book or the other sources. Or choose something similar that piques your interest. There are many classics - see for example wikipedia's list of algorithms.

(I've given links to many wikipedia articles above; those are often good starting places for computing topics, but I would expect you to find other additional sources.)

In terms of grading, I will be looking for something that shows me that you understand the ideas that we've been working on this semester. I would rather see something small done well than something big and complicated done in a partial way. Do write some code to implement one of these problems, document your code to make it understandable, and show me its output. Do write a short paper explaining the underlying problem, the approach you're using, and the process you went through in working on it - what was easy, what was hard, what sources you used - that sort of thing.

I'm giving you plenty of time to work on this, so start early and get feedback.

Questions? Ask!