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Computational Geometry: Algorithms and Applications [Hardcover]

Mark de Berg , Otfried Cheong , Marc van Kreveld , Mark Overmars
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
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Book Description

April 16 2008 3540779736 978-3540779735 3rd ed. 2008
This introduction to computational geometry focuses on algorithms. Motivation is provided from the application areas as all techniques are related to particular applications in robotics, graphics, CAD/CAM, and geographic information systems. Modern insights in computational geometry are used to provide solutions that are both efficient and easy to understand and implement.

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"An excellent introduction to the field is given here, including a general motivation and usage cases beyond simple graphics rendering or interaction." from the ACM Reviews by William Fahle, University of Texas at Dallas, USA

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Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
4.4 out of 5 stars
Most helpful customer reviews
By Jason
(1) Each chapter begins with a practical example. For example, the chapter computing intersections of lines starts with a discussion of a map-making application that goes into enough detail to see how the algorithms they present would be useful. This is a considerable step up from the common practice in algorithms literature of motivation by way of vaguely mentioning some related field (i.e. "These string matching algorithms are useful in computational biology"). This book does a much better job of motivating the material it presents, but if you're primarily interested in the abstract problem, these sections can be skipped.
(2) Each chapter is relatively self-contained. Feel free to skip ahead to subjects that interest you.
(3) Surprisingly readable. Unlike most technical material, one can read an entire chapter in a single sitting without missing much. Generally, each chapter will develop a single algorithm for a single kind of problem.
(4) It's very up to date. This second edition is less than two years old, it includes some new results in the field.
(1) Algorithms are only given in pseudocode. The emphasis is on describing algorithms and data structures clearly and completely. If you're looking for a "cookbook" with code to copy and paste into an application, perhaps O'Rourke's "Computational Geometry in C" would be a better choice.
(2) There are many important advanced results that are not discussed in the main text. An obvious example is the first chapter, which describes a well-known convex hull algorithm that takes O(n log n) time but algorithms that are faster for most inputs are mentioned only in the "Notes and Comments" at the end of the chapter. Someone interested in lots of gory details would be well-served to combine this book with Boissonnat and Yvinec's more detailed and mathematical "Algorithmic Geometry".
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4.0 out of 5 stars Interesting read, excellent theory, no code Aug. 4 2001
This book serves as a survey of computational geometry algorithms. The explanations are very readable. The authors have taken special care to prove algorithm correctness and time complexity bounds.
Although I have yet to actually implement one of the algorithms in the book directly, I was exposed to a number of general techniques which I have used, such as randomized techniques to eliminate pathological worst-case performance problems, and various space partitioning techniques.
The algorithms are all presented in pseudocode, unfortunately, which is the reason for only 4 out of 5 stars. Also, some important details are omitted which make a few of their algorithms practically useless (although they are interesting theoritically). For example, there is an algorithm for pathfinding and collision avoidance for a translating (but not ROTATING!) robot.
If you're lookin for a computational geometry bible, this isn't it. But there are certainly some gems in this book and it is a very interesting read.
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5.0 out of 5 stars The Beginning of a new era in writing! May 28 1999
By A Customer
I agree to the reader from Masachusets that some pseudocode in the book has some small errors, but this is acceptable(first editions of books ALWAYS have mistakes if difficult matter are dealt). My opinion is that the pseudocode induced by the algorithms are given for the sake of completeness! What a researcher needs is the PHILOSOPHY of the algorithm NOT the code. The code can be found in full detail(involving all or some degenerate cases) in other books like Computational Geometry in C, Though I do not see the reason why C should be the dominant language... Also this book is written for clever minds, there is no reason to unleash your bitterness towards the book because you can not understand it! But the mistakes in the book are there ! So normaly I would have given to it a 4 star but since this book fortells what the books will look like in the future,(A combination of Techicality and also Philosophy) I put 5 stars! My total impression of the book is that it is a MUST have book and should be in the collection of every serious researcher involved in this field! Bravo to de Berg!
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5.0 out of 5 stars The best computational geometry book! May 4 1999
By A Customer
I also completely disagree with the one-star review below. The "Dutch book" is the clearest, most complete, most up-to-date, best designed, best illustrated computational geometry textbook out there. Some of the material may be a bit advanced for undergraduates (and for those people I would recommend Joe O'Rourke's excellent "Computational Geometry in C"), but for graduate students and other researchers who want to learn computational geometry, this book is absolutely essential.
This is an algorithms textbook, though, not a textbook full of code. You will not find compilable code in the author's favorite programming language du jour -- this may be what the first reviewer meant by "desperately needed details". What you will find is clear, correct, well-motivated explanations of the underlying algorithms, data structures, and mathematics.
The book does have a few faults. The motivating examples are often forced ("mixing things" for convex hulls??). The authors deliberately chose to show only one algorithm for each problem they consider, and occasionally the algorithm they chose is not the simplest or most efficient. But these are minor points.
If you're going to buy just one computational geometry book, this is the one to get.
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Most recent customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Worth a read
Easy reading, excellent text on the topic. I'm coming from a Geomatics (CompSci/Geog) based background and in my 4th year of University. Read more
Published on June 4 2012 by Basil
5.0 out of 5 stars Extremely well written
Algorithm books are often quite hard to understand, but this is not the case with this book. The information is very compact so it is a slow read but due to the high quality of the... Read more
Published on Oct. 26 2002 by Jacob Marner
4.0 out of 5 stars Clear and concise
The book is well written and easy to understand. An ideal book for someone planning to apply computation geometry for real-life problems. Read more
Published on June 26 2001 by Stark Knight
5.0 out of 5 stars Lucid and Complete
Compared to other texts on Computational Geometry, like the Preparata / Shamos collection -- this book is simple to read; it's very well written. Read more
Published on June 18 2001 by Wayne Miller
5.0 out of 5 stars In a way an old friend...
I really liked the contents of this book when it was really still the syllabus of a course I followed at Utrecht University while studying there. Read more
Published on Nov. 27 2000 by Jarno Peschier
5.0 out of 5 stars Makes for a great class
I taught a class using that book, and I found it an invaluable help as an instructor in presenting the material. Read more
Published on March 10 2000
5.0 out of 5 stars Buy this book immediately!!!
I completely disagree with the above commentor who evaluates it as a kind of bad book.
I can not find any errors in pseudo code, and it's very easy for me to understand and... Read more
Published on Nov. 3 1998
1.0 out of 5 stars lacks detail, vague explanations, filled with errors
This text is far to vague, avoiding desperately needed details and examples to support the theories and algorithms it presents. Read more
Published on Oct. 23 1998
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