# Questions tagged [soft-question]

A soft question is a question (possibly subjective) about the field of theoretical computer science as opposed to being a question in theoretical computer science.

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### What should I do to switch from math department to cs to research tcs topics?

This can be a very weird question, but I haven't seen the same situation with mine in this forum, so I'd like to put this. Let me introudce my situation first. I'm now a math student of master ...
292 views

### Formula in common: How to search for same/similar equations in other knowledge domains?

In a recent presentation by Sedgewick, he recounts in 1977 Flajolet noticed that they had a formula in common, both in different domains (see slide 4 in http://www.cs.princeton.edu/~rs/talks/AofA2AC....
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### What is the origin and meaning of the phrase “Lambda the ultimate?”

I've been messing around with functional programming languages for a few years, and I keep encountering this phrase. I understand what lambda means, the idea of an anonymous function is both simple ...
530 views

### How fundamental is undecidability? [closed]

What does it mean that some problem is undecidable? For instance the halting problem. Does it mean that humans can never invent a new technique that always decides whether a turing machine will halt?...
459 views

### Natural notion for computational hardness

When I teach students concepts like intractable problems and efficient algorithms in discrete structures or data structures and algorithms, it is difficult for students to intuitively grasp somewhat ...
476 views

### Reading Papers with Unclear Typesetting

From time to time, I have to read a paper with unclear typesetting. By this, I mean: very small fonts; sometimes 8pt or smaller. very bad scan; Using bitmap fonts instead of vector ones. too old ...
576 views

### Simple Constructions of Special Graph Families

Consider the following definition, taken from Chung's 1978 paper: An $(n, m)$-concentrator is a graph with $n$ input vertices and $m$ output vertices, $n \ge m$, having the property that, for ...
924 views

### Handbook of Logic in Computer Science - is it worth it?

I just found the first volume of Handbook of Logic in Computer Science in a library, but unfortunately I won't be able to use it here. It seems like a great resource, but it's insanely expensive to ...
820 views

### TCS conferences for undergraduate students?

I have noticed that ICFP has a student volunteer program and research program that accepts undergraduate students and POPL have the Programming Language Mentoring Workshop, so I was wondering if there ...
1k views

### What to do as a Theoretical computer science PhD student in a free time?

I am a mid-stage theoretical computer science student. Although I have a busy schedule, I still have a one or one a half hour in a day which I devote to reading and solving the question given Jeff ...
546 views

### How can I obtain famous articles which are not available online?

I have Googled myself to death, but have been unable to find the following articles: Breen, E., Monro, D., 1994. An evaluation of priority queues for mathematical morphology. R. Beare and H. Talbot.,...
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### Status of the Junta Problem (soft question)

Does the learning theory community in general believe that juntas can be learned in polynomial time? The naive algorithm works in quasi-polynomial time. MOS's paper shows how to solve the junta ...