A prescribed finite set of well defined rules or processes for the solutions of a problem in a finite number of steps. Explained in simple English, it is the mathematical formula for an operation, such as computing the check digits on packets of data that travel via packet switched networks.

## Compression

This category is only for sites discussing the compression algorithms themselves. Companies offering compression software or hardware should be submitted to the appropriate subcategory of Computers/Software/Data_Compression or Computers/Hardware.

Personal pages of compression researchers should be submitted to Computers/Algorithms/Compression/Researchers.

Sites about or belonging to a compression-related research group or relating to a compression conference should be submitted to Computers/Algorithms/Compression/Research_Groups or Computers/Algorithms/Compression/Conferences.

## Computational Algebra

Computational Algebra refers to the use of computers to perform mathematical operations in either a symbolic or numeric fashion. This includes (but is not limited to) such objects of interest as: * arbitrary precision integers * polynomials * finite fields * groups * vectors * matrices * graphs * codes * curves * integrals * differential equations * limits and many more. This section aims to provide references to subjects of relevance to the field of computational algebra, including lists of available software and descriptions of important algorithms in the field.

## Conferences

Conferences and similar meetings for study and research into Algorithms.

## People

Researchers in algorithms and related areas.

## Pseudorandom Numbers

Algorithms for generating numbers according to a particular probability distribution. For example, the two most common problems are generating integers uniformly between 1 and n, and generating real numbers uniformly between 0 and 1. Other common distributions include Gaussian and Poisson. Because most random-number-generation algorithms have no influence from the outside environment, they are inherently pseudorandom: predictable, and following a pattern, also ideally not an apparent one. Thus the quote:
"Anyone who considers arithmetical methods of producing random digits is, of course, in a state of sin." - John von Neumann (1951)
A classic reference on this topic, and a good starting point, is Donald Knuth's Art of Computer Programming.
"Random number generators should not be chosen at random." - Donald Knuth (1986)
Another good reference, for nonuniform random number generation in particular, is Luc Devroye's Non-Uniform Random Variate Generation (Springer-Verlag); see also his page in this category. There are also some approaches that claim to be "truly random," based on outside data like radioactive decay and white noise from deep space. However, randomness is inherently a theoretical notion, and is difficult to exhibit perfectly in real life, unless perhaps we fully master quantum mechanics.
Appropriate topics include descriptions of algorithms for pseudorandom numbers, overviews of the relevant ideas, and services for "truly random" numbers.

## Publications

Publications in the field of Computer Algorithms: books, journals, preprints, bibliographies, web-based texts, lecture notes, etc.