COSC 326 Étude 7 Joined up writing


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Say that two words join up if a proper suffix of one is a proper prefix of the next. For
instance the words “suffix” and “fixture” join up. For a pair of joined up words, the
suffix of one which is a prefix of the other will be called the common part. We specify
two slight variations:
singly joined the common part is at least half as long as one of the two words, and
doubly joined the common part is at least half as long as both words.
The basic problem will be to find, for a given “dictionary” a shortest sequence of joined
up words that link a beginning word to an end word. For instance:
bard ardent entire
is a sequence linking “bard” to “entire” in which each pair is doubly joined. On the
other hand,
suffix fixture read
is a singly joined sequence.
The I/O requirements for this task are strict.
• Your program should take two command line parameters (words to join up).
• A dictionary of available words will be input from stdin. This dictionary could
contain up to 100,000 “words” (which need not be English words). However, the
words will consist only of the characters a through z (i.e., lower case Latin letters).
The output (to stdout) from any single run should be two lines:
• The first line should consist of a non-negative integer which is the length of the
shortest singly joined sequence between the two words (0 if no chain exists), followed by such a sequence (if it exists).
• The second line should be similar, but report on doubly joined chains.
For instance, using the example above, one might see (depending on the words in the
dictionary of course):
$ java JoinUp suffix read < dict.txt 3 suffix fixture read 6 suffix fixage agent entire ire read (P 2)