Definitions for NP
This page provides all possible meanings and translations of the word NP
Random House Webster's College Dictionary
* Chem. Symbol..
neptunium, Np, atomic number 93(noun)
a radioactive transuranic metallic element; found in trace amounts in uranium ores; a by-product of the production of plutonium
nurse practitioner, NP, nurse clinician(noun)
a registered nurse who has received special training and can perform many of the duties of a physician
Abbreviation of "non-deterministic polynomial"; the complexity class of computational problems that a non-deterministic Turing machine can solve in polynomial time.
In computational complexity theory, NP is one of the most fundamental complexity classes. The abbreviation NP refers to "nondeterministic polynomial time." Intuitively, NP is the set of all decision problems for which the instances where the answer is "yes" have efficiently verifiable proofs of the fact that the answer is indeed "yes". More precisely, these proofs have to be verifiable in polynomial time by a deterministic Turing machine. In an equivalent formal definition, NP is the set of decision problems where the "yes"-instances can be accepted in polynomial time by a non-deterministic Turing machine. The equivalence of the two definitions follows from the fact that an algorithm on such a non-deterministic machine consists of two phases, the first of which consists of a guess about the solution, which is generated in a non-deterministic way, while the second consists of a deterministic algorithm that verifies or rejects the guess as a valid solution to the problem. The complexity class P is contained in NP, but NP contains many important problems, the hardest of which are called NP-complete problems, for which no polynomial-time algorithms are known for solving them. The most important open question in complexity theory, the P = NP problem, asks whether polynomial time algorithms actually exist for NP-complete, and by corollary, all NP problems. It is widely believed that this is not the case.
The New Hacker's Dictionary
Extremely. Used to modify adjectives describing a level or quality of difficulty; the connotation is often ‘more so than it should be’. This is generalized from the computer-science terms NP-hard and NP-complete; NP-complete problems all seem to be very hard, but so far no one has found a proof that they are. NP is the set of Nondeterministic-Polynomial problems, those that can be completed by a nondeterministic Turing machine in an amount of time that is a polynomial function of the size of the input; a solution for one NP-complete problem would solve all the others. “Coding a BitBlt implementation to perform correctly in every case is NP-annoying.”Note, however, that strictly speaking this usage is misleading; there are plenty of easy problems in class NP. NP-complete problems are hard not because they are in class NP, but because they are the hardest problems in class NP.
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