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The Theory of Computation

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The Theory of Computation, 9780201258288 (0201258285), Addison Wesley, 1997

This is the best text on complexity theory I have seen, and could easily become the standard text on the subject...This is the first modern text on the theory of computing. ---William Ward Jr, Ph.D, University of South Alabama

Taking a practical approach, this modern introduction to the theory of computation focuses on the study of problem solving through computation in the presence of realistic resource constraints. The Theory of Computation explores questions and methods that characterize theoretical computer science while relating all developments to practical issues in computing. The book establishes clear limits to computation, relates these limits to resource usage, and explores possible avenues of compromise through approximation and randomization. The book also provides an overview of current areas of research in theoretical computer science that are likely to have a significant impact on the practice of computing within the next few years.

Highlights Motivates theoretical developments by connecting them to practical issues. Introduces every result and proof with an informal overview to build intuition. Introduces models through finite automata, then builds to universal models, including recursion theory. Emphasizes complexity theory, beginning with a detailed discussion of resource use in computation. Includes large numbers of examples and illustrates abstract ideas through diagrams Gives informal presentations of difficult recent results with profound implications for computing.

The writing style is very literate and careful. This is a well-written book on theoretical computer science, which is very refreshing. Clear motivations, and lucid reflections on the implications of what the author proves abound. ---James A. Foster, Ph.D., University of Idaho

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