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Whip Until Solved
Found in: Computing in Science and Engineering
By Francis Sullivan
Issue Date:January 2010
pp. 73-75
<p>In this installment of Prescriptions, I'll explain how to use iterated projections to design an algorithm for solving Sudoku puzzles. I'll also illustrate why iteration doesn't always give the desired result.</p>
 
That Was Then, This Is Now
Found in: Computing in Science and Engineering
By Francis Sullivan
Issue Date:January 2009
pp. 80
Contributing editor Francis Sullivan ponders the difference between experiencing evolutionary shocks in real life versus computational life.
 
I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud
Found in: Computing in Science and Engineering
By Francis Sullivan
Issue Date:May 2008
pp. 88
Columnist Francis Sullivan ponders the mysteries of Gmail, and talks about the trade-offs between what it promises and the costs of those promises.
 
Wrong Again!
Found in: Computing in Science and Engineering
By Francis Sullivan
Issue Date:May 2007
pp. 96
Contributing editor Francis Sullivan explores the issue of self-checking algorithms.
 
Born to Compute
Found in: Computing in Science and Engineering
By Francis Sullivan
Issue Date:July 2006
pp. 88
By now, almost all readers of this magazine have come in contact with Sudoku puzzles. Many of you have already become addicted, and I'd guess a few brave souls have even started a 12-step plan in a desperate attempt to kick the habit and become useful memb...
 
Guest Editors' Introduction: Monte Carlo Methods
Found in: Computing in Science and Engineering
By Isabel Beichl, Francis Sullivan
Issue Date:March 2006
pp. 7-8
The term Monte Carlo method stands for any member of a very large class of computational methods that use randomness to generate
 
Book Review: Is that Your Final Answer?
Found in: Computing in Science and Engineering
By Francis Sullivan
Issue Date:July 2005
pp. 67
The SIAM 100-Digit Challenge is an entertaining and valuable book that belongs on the shelf of everyone who takes numerical computation seriously. Even the story of how the book came to be is interesting.
 
Let a Hundred Flowers Bloom and a Hundred Schools of Thought Contend!
Found in: Computing in Science and Engineering
By Francis Sullivan
Issue Date:July 2005
pp. 96
Should computational science have a
 
From the Editors: Frankenstein Jr.
Found in: Computing in Science and Engineering
By Francis Sullivan
Issue Date:January 2003
pp. 2-3
No summary available.
 
From the Editors
Found in: Computing in Science and Engineering
By Francis Sullivan
Issue Date:May 2001
pp. 2-5
This issue of CiSE contains several articles on the general topic of
 
Guest Editors' Introduction: Tomorrow's Hardest Problems
Found in: Computing in Science and Engineering
By George Cybenko, Francis Sullivan
Issue Date:May 2001
pp. 40-41
In 1900, David Hilbert presented 23 problems at the International Congress of Mathematicians held in Paris. Hilbert's problems spanned the spectrum from rather trivial (Problem 3 on the equality of the volumes of two tetrahedra) to the probably impossible ...
 
Determining the Determinant
Found in: Computing in Science and Engineering
By Isabel Beichl, Francis Sullivan
Issue Date:September 2000
pp. 63-66
No summary available.
 
A = B?
Found in: Computing in Science and Engineering
By Isabel Beichl, Francis Sullivan
Issue Date:May 2000
pp. 84-87
In this prescription we'll describe one technique for working with extremely large integers having perhaps thousands of digits, using only standard hardware and software. This technique uses modular arithmetic in a way that lets us recover the actual integ...
 
Guest Editors' Introduction: The Top 10 Algorithms
Found in: Computing in Science and Engineering
By Jack Dongarra, Francis Sullivan
Issue Date:January 2000
pp. 22-23
In putting together this issue of CiSE, we knew three things: it would be difficult to list just 10 algorithms; it would be fun to assemble the authors and read their papers; and, whatever we came up with in the end, it would be controversial. We tried to ...
 
Pay Me Now or Pay Me Later
Found in: Computing in Science and Engineering
By Isabel Beichl, Francis Sullivan
Issue Date:July 1999
pp. 59-62
A colleague recently asked for a way to sample from a Poisson distribution to simulate the way metallic flakes cluster in paint. The flakes aren't distributed uniformly at random throughout the paint binder but form clusters around center points. The numbe...
 
The Importance of Importance Sampling
Found in: Computing in Science and Engineering
By Isabel Beichl, Francis Sullivan
Issue Date:March 1999
pp. 71-73
No summary available.
 
Interleave in Peace, or Interleave in Pieces
Found in: Computing in Science and Engineering
By Isabel Beichl, Francis Sullivan
Issue Date:April 1998
pp. 92-96
No summary available.
 
Make Me a Match
Found in: Computing in Science and Engineering
By Isabel Beichl, Francis Sullivan
Issue Date:October 1997
pp. 88-93
No summary available.
 
Who Needs Efficient Algorithms?
Found in: Computing in Science and Engineering
By Francis Sullivan
Issue Date:September 1995
pp. 1-1
No summary available.
 
The Art of Approximation
Found in: Computing in Science and Engineering
By Francis Sullivan
Issue Date:November 2010
pp. 59-61
<p>A fine line divides
 
The Shape of Things to Come
Found in: Computing in Science and Engineering
By Francis Sullivan
Issue Date:March 2010
pp. 96
<p>It's false to assume that a plethora of unmediated blogs can and should substitute for actual investigation and thought, followed by editing and then reporting. Print publications' great strength is that they're refereed or otherwise evaluated bef...
 
Guest Editor's Introduction: Cloud Computing for the Sciences
Found in: Computing in Science and Engineering
By Francis Sullivan
Issue Date:July 2009
pp. 10-11
The guest editor of this special issue on cloud computing defines the term and describes the articles highlighted.
 
Cut It Out!
Found in: Computing in Science and Engineering
By Isabel Beichl, Francis Sullivan
Issue Date:May 2009
pp. 74-79
This issue marks the return of the Computing Prescriptions department; here, the authors describe an algorithm for finding minimum cutsets in connected graphs.
 
Combinatorics in Computing
Found in: Computing in Science and Engineering
By Isabel Beichl, Francis Sullivan
Issue Date:March 2008
pp. 12-13
Guest editors Isabel Beichl and Francis Sullivan discuss the field of combinatorics in general and the articles in this special issue in particular, highlighting the recent upsurge in research in this area as well as some interesting applications of it (su...
 
Curb Your Enthusiasm
Found in: Computing in Science and Engineering
By Francis Sullivan
Issue Date:January 2008
pp. 96
Contributing editor Francis Sullivan describes the effects the Web--specifically, sites like Google and Amazon--have had, good and bad, on scientific research.
 
Petaflop Essay Contest
Found in: Computing in Science and Engineering
By Thomas Luu, Ron Soltz, Pavlos Vranas, Christopher M. Frenz, Francis Sullivan
Issue Date:November 2007
pp. 55-59
CiSE's petaflop computing contest sparked an interesting influx of entries; the winning essay and the runner-up explore two ends of the computational spectrum, and the contest's organizer, Francis Sullivan, explores the topic in general.
 
Is This the Party to Whom I Am Speaking?
Found in: Computing in Science and Engineering
By Francis Sullivan
Issue Date:September 2007
pp. 96
Contributing editor Francis Sullivan explores the phenomenon of phoney email scams and the
 
Monte Carlo Minimization and Counting: One, Two, ., Too Many
Found in: Computing in Science and Engineering
By Isabel Beichl, Dianne P. O'Leary, Francis Sullivan
Issue Date:January 2007
pp. 72-80
Monte Carlo methods use sampling to produce approximate solutions to problems for which other methods aren't practical. In this homework assignment, we study three uses of Monte Carlo methods: for function minimization, discrete optimization, and counting.
 
Is Numerical Analysis Boring?
Found in: Computing in Science and Engineering
By Francis Sullivan
Issue Date:November 2006
pp. 104
In principle, this could be a four-word essay because the short answer is,
 
The Other Monte Carlo Method
Found in: Computing in Science and Engineering
By Isabel Beichl, Francis Sullivan
Issue Date:March 2006
pp. 42-47
Although the Metropolis algorithm dates back to at least 1953, the fact that it could be used for approximate counting has become clear only in recent years. An algorithm specifically designed for counting was created around the same time as the Metropolis...
 
What Is It Like to Be a Bot?
Found in: Computing in Science and Engineering
By Francis Sullivan
Issue Date:January 2006
pp. 96
Our title is a take-off on Thomas Nagel's profound and famous piece,
 
From the Editors: Good, Bad, or Indifferent?
Found in: Computing in Science and Engineering
By Francis Sullivan
Issue Date:November 2004
pp. 3
Outgoing editor-in-chief Francis Sullivan weighs the debate between good and bad science, while also signing off as EIC and welcoming aboard Norman Chonacky.
 
From the Editors: The Future Ain't What It Used to Be
Found in: Computing in Science and Engineering
By Francis Sullivan
Issue Date:September 2004
pp. 3
A fanciful way to describe the difference between magic and science is by way of humankind?s relationship with the gods. Magic, in this view, is an attempt to force the gods to do what we humans want, but science is an attempt to determine what the gods wi...
 
From the Editors: P ≠ NP
Found in: Computing in Science and Engineering
By Francis Sullivan
Issue Date:July 2004
pp. 2
When and if the statement in the title is proved, the person who proves it will win a million dollars and become an instant megastar. He or she will certainly appear on the front page of The New York Times and should expect invitations from late-night talk...
 
From the Editors: Computational Science and Pathological Science
Found in: Computing in Science and Engineering
By Francis Sullivan
Issue Date:May 2004
pp. 2-3
Every now and then, a peculiar kind of news story appears about some scientific topic. On first reading, it looks like ?startling new results? or ?the answer to everything? about some perpetually hot topic, such as the age of the universe, the origin of ma...
 
From the Editors: Sez Who?
Found in: Computing in Science and Engineering
By Francis Sullivan
Issue Date:March 2004
pp. 4-5
<p>A recent article in The New York Times described the work of a professor at Stanford who says that experts in literature should not spend time actually reading things. Instead, he thinks they should gather statistics, plot data, and generally do w...
 
From the Editors: Say Every Word on Every Slide
Found in: Computing in Science and Engineering
By Francis Sullivan
Issue Date:January 2004
pp. 3-4
<p>Although PowerPoint is very far from being the kind of tool of choice for preparing and presenting scientific talks and, although working around the ad hoc constraints it imposes on its mass market can be pretty difficult, the software?s shortcomi...
 
From the Editors: Ask the Hard Questions
Found in: Computing in Science and Engineering
By Francis Sullivan
Issue Date:November 2003
pp. 3-5
<p>For particular classes of problems that we can state as generalizations of finding the period of a discrete function or locating an item on a discrete list, quantum computing promises a dramatic speedup over classical machines. Quantum computing h...
 
From the Editors: Reproduced and Reproducible Results
Found in: Computing in Science and Engineering
By Francis Sullivan
Issue Date:September 2003
pp. 3-4
<p>The punchline of this message is that computation changes everything, high-speed computation changes everything quickly, and lots of people doing lots of high-speed computation changes everything a lot.</p>
 
Computational Science: We'll Know It When We See It
Found in: Computing in Science and Engineering
By Francis Sullivan
Issue Date:July 2003
pp. 2
<p></p>
 
How Right You Are!
Found in: Computing in Science and Engineering
By Francis Sullivan
Issue Date:May 2003
pp. 2-3
<p>Do you believe in your software's output? How much do you trust it? These questions force us to think about computation in a different and important way. In fact, understanding how much to trust the results is as important as the results themselve...
 
From the Editors: Less Is More (Is Less)
Found in: Computing in Science and Engineering
By Francis Sullivan
Issue Date:March 2003
pp. 3
<p>Literature?in fact, all the arts?are customarily in the middle of some
 
EWD:Making It Simple Is Not Easy
Found in: Computing in Science and Engineering
By Francis Sullivan
Issue Date:November 2002
pp. 2-3
No summary available.
 
It All Comes Down To B_NEW \Leftarrow B_0 \oplus (B_1 \vee B_2)
Found in: Computing in Science and Engineering
By Francis Sullivan
Issue Date:September 2002
pp. 2-3
<b>It All Comes Down To B_NEW \Leftarrow B_0 \oplus (B_1 \vee B_2)</b> <p> The formula in the title is the binary version of the rule 30 from Stephen Wolfran's new book, <it> A New Kind of Science </it>(Wolfram Media, 2002) Ru...
 
Oh, What a Tangled Web We Weave
Found in: Computing in Science and Engineering
By Francis Sullivan
Issue Date:July 2002
pp. 3-5
<p>Not long ago, a friend had an experience that some might call a
 
Guest Editors' Introduction: Limits on Computation
Found in: Computing in Science and Engineering
By Douglass E. Post, Francis Sullivan
Issue Date:May 2002
pp. 14-15
<p>Each year, computers grow more powerful, and we use them to solve increasingly complex and important problems. In this issue, we explore some limits to this growth.</p>
 
Trust but Verify
Found in: Computing in Science and Engineering
By Francis Sullivan
Issue Date:May 2002
pp. 3-4
<p>For many years, computational modeling talks ended with a sentence like the one in this essay's title. Serious computational researchers were forced to live the life of a great white shark-silently cruising the shallows, always looking for more co...
 
Trust but Verify
Found in: Computing in Science and Engineering
By Francis Sullivan
Issue Date:March 2002
pp. 3-4
<p>At the recent Joint Mathematics Meetings held in San Diego, I ran into an old friend who told me he is now doing
 
What's New
Found in: Computing in Science and Engineering
By Francis Sullivan
Issue Date:January 2002
pp. 3-4
<p>Many of the startling results obtained in the 20th century about the foundations of physics actually appear in papers produced years before the official discovery. One nice example is the existence of antimatter, which was predicted from symmetrie...
 
Willing Suspension of Disbelief
Found in: Computing in Science and Engineering
By Francis Sullivan
Issue Date:November 2001
pp. 3
No summary available.
 
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