Questions tagged [algorithm]

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13 votes
1 answer
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Who invented short and long division?

I am curious who came up with algorithms that we use today to manually solve mathematical division problems, such as short or long division; how were they established or standardized that way and why?...
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6 votes
1 answer
219 views

What is the earliest instance of the use of an algorithm to solve problems?

In reading a description on Usenet of a NIST competition for selecting a standard cipher, I read: Consider that the best currently known methods for factoring use randomization: Construct enough ...
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17 votes
1 answer
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Was Kolmogorov enraged after learning about the Karatsuba multiplication algorithm?

Some years ago, I read that Kolmogorov was so enraged that Karatsuba disproved one of his conjectures that he terminated his seminar shortly thereafter. This Wikipedia page claims that Kolmogorov was ...
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7 votes
1 answer
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Were ancient Romans so bad at computations before Arab numerals?

It is often said that Romans (see below) had a terrible number system, which made computations a mess. I do believe this, but I'm suspicious of the claim that nobody had better ways to do computations ...
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