Friday, 8 November 2013

Who is an outcast?

I'm attending an online course on Algorithms, Part II by Robert Sedgewick and Kevin Wayne. I implemented a tool that uses WordNet data to determine an outcast in a group of words. What was interesting about that? There was a file outcast2.txt which contained only two words: von_Neuman and Turing. Here is the result of a test:

Test 1: test outcast() on WordNet digraph
  *  outcast2.txt
     -  nouns = Turing von_Neumann 
     -  student   outcast() = von_Neumann
     -  reference outcast() = Turing
It occurs that Turing was an outcast, not von_Neuman. Hmmm, according to the video by Bret Victor, if we had listened to all von_Neuman's theories, we all would write code in an assembly language ;)

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