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Mon Aug 2 21:34:10 CDT 2004

        The "pearls" in question center not only on choosing the right
        algorithms (like binary searches, sorting techniques, or sparse
        arrays) but also on showing how to solve problems effectively.
        Each chapter frames a particular programming task--such as
        sorting numbers, creating anagrams, or counting the words in a
        block of text--many drawn from Bentley's experiences in his long
        career as a developer. The book traces the process of arriving
        at a fast, efficient, and accurate solution, along with code
        profiling to discover what works best. After refining the
        correct answer, each chapter enumerates programming principles
        that you can use on your own.

The exercises have solutions in C and C++, but don't let that scare you off.
The concepts are general. The goal of this book is to help you *think*
like a programmer. Giving solutions to the puzzles is only a means to an
end, and this book is all about the means.

Some of the puzzles may be easily solved in Perl simply because it's a high-
level language, but there are plenty of clever problems.

For example:

Q: What's the fastest, most space-efficient way to sort all
of Portland's 503 phone numbers? 


[1] Bentley, Jon Louis, _Programming_Pearls, 2nd ed, Addison-Wesley, 1999.

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