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Old 2005-08-08, 17:28   #6
xilman's Avatar
May 2003
Down not across

2·3·1,699 Posts

Originally Posted by R.D. Silverman
Define "close". What you suggest is certainly not trivial.

As for writing a program, I suspect you have not considered alll of
the ramifications. What polynomial would you choose for (say)
2, 1450L?
Not trivial. put probably worth attempting, even if only as a learning exercise.

Even when one has considered all the ramifications, should that even be possible, one doesn't have to write a program that deals with every case. If 2,1450L turns out to be too hard, and I'm not claiming it is, a program that deals correctly with enough other interesting cases can still be very useful.

Some time ago I wrote a program to help maintain my factor tables. It deduces which table it may be processing by examining the first few lines of the table. It doesn't recognize all tables by any means, but because it recognizes Cunningham, BMtR, Cullen, Woodall, Generalized (Cullen&Woodall) and N!\pm1 I find it incredibly useful. Extending it to more cases will be straightforward if the need arises.

Rule of thumb: good may not be perfect, but can be useful.

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