# Algorithms in a Nutshell

This book makes a promise of providing practical ways of implementing algorithms without all the maths that explain how the algorithms work but it doesn't keep that promise.

**My Rating:**

### Pros

- Explains which algorithm is more efficient in which circumstances.
- Provides executable examples of each algorithm.

### Cons

- Devotes a lot of the book to the maths of how the algorithms work after promising not to.
- Despite its claims to the contrary the book devotes more space to the theory behind the algorithms than it does to their practical implementation.

### Description

- First Edition: October 2008
- 343 page paperback
- Published by O'Reilly Media
- ISBN: 0-596-51624-X
- A desktop Quick Reference
- Authors George T Heineman, Gary Pollice and Stanley Selkow

### Review

This book claims to be a practical guide to algorithms and recommends a book called "Introduction to Algorithms" to those looking for the theory. Despite that claim the book appears to concentrate more on the theory and less on the actual practical implementations of those algorithms. Instead of the "brief" explanation of the theory of how the given algorithms work followed by a single language example of how to implement it the book would have been far more practical had it skipped the theory and just presented the same algorithm implemented into several different languages.

As the book stands, if you do not understand all the languages that the book uses for its examples well enough you are not going to be able to translate them into the language you need to implement them in. Additional examples in other languages would have made it easier to translate into any language.

As far as practical books on algorithms are concerned I think that "Mastering Algorithms With C" is a far better example of a practical guide (judging from the 1999 first edition that I have referenced on may occasions over the past 9 years).

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