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### Re^5: Comparative satisfiability of regexps.

by sleepingsquirrel (Hermit)
 on Jan 20, 2005 at 23:04 UTC ( #423822=note: print w/replies, xml ) Need Help??

As a separate note, I'm really disinclined to accept Monte Carlo proofs in the hard sciences.
I guess that means you don't trust public key encryption then, because RSA needs prime numbers to work with, but everybody just uses a variation of the Fermat test to check whether the keys generated are probably prime. But most people aren't overly concerned by this because you can set your threshold for "probably" to be, say, 100 times lower than the probablity that cosmic radiation will flip a bit in your memory causing an otherwise perfect algorthim to fail.

-- All code is 100% tested and functional unless otherwise noted.
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Re^6: Comparative satisfiability of regexps.
by Meowse (Beadle) on Jan 21, 2005 at 01:10 UTC
I still maintain that there's a difference between quantifiable stochastic approaches (where one can state definitively how likely it is that the number is non-prime) and Monte Carlo approaches (where one throws possible disconfirming values at it until one "feels confident" that it's "tested enough").

If the nature of your regexps were such that you could say "of the possible million values in the range, we have tested a randomly selected 10% of them, and thus we are reasonably confident that the regexps will work for all values", I'd be willing to consider it as evidence, if not functional proof. But with a potentially infinite range for the regexps, I wouldn't even consider it evidence.

Take care,

Mickey.

Re^6: Comparative satisfiability of regexps.
by Aristotle (Chancellor) on Jan 21, 2005 at 12:20 UTC

That analogy is flawed. That's how public key cryptography is implemented in practice, for practical reasons, to be sure. It's not how the cryptographic algorithms are constructed mathematically, however. And of course there's the quantifiable vs Monte Carlo difference Meowse mentioned.

Makeshifts last the longest.

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