Initially – that is, from the moment of our birth – we stare at the world about us. This is an obvious state.

from Latin obvius “that is in the way, presenting itself readily, open, exposed, commonplace,” from obviam (adv.) “in the way,” from ob “in front of, against”

This predominantly absorptive characteristic is later combined with and manifested in an expressive way of looking at the world about us; for example, musically, theatrically, comically, scientifically, naturally, arithmetically, legally, artistically, etc. When a particular manner of regarding the world overtakes us (as it normally does no matter how eclectic we may imagine ourselves to be) we develop what becomes identified as our peculiar perspective of the world. This in turn traditionally translates to what is an algorithmic identity; that is, a step-by-step procedure for solving a problem or accomplishing some end.

An algorithm is a procedure used for solving a problem or performing a computation. Algorithms act as an exact list of instructions that conduct specified actions step by step in either hardware- or software-based routines.

Common examples include: the recipe for baking a cake, the method we use to solve a long division problem, the process of doing laundry, and the functionality of a search engine are all examples of an algorithm.

Our perspective of life predicts the way we see and do things. Like it or not our internal mechanics resemble a computer.

Algorithmic programming is all about writing a set of rules with a finite number of steps that instruct the computer how to perform a task. A computer program is essentially an algorithm that tells the computer what specific steps to execute, in what specific order, in order to carry out a specific task. Algorithms are written using particular syntax, depending on the programming language being used.

An important variant of algorithms is syntax. Syntax is to methodology what presentation is to food; that is, we’re all looking at the same thing but perhaps from a different angle. Depending upon the syntax we can go from conservative to Bohemian.

Algorithmic thinking, or the ability to define clear steps to solve a problem, is crucial in many different fields, including machine learning and artificial intelligence. Even if we’re not conscious of it, we use algorithms and algorithmic thinking all the time.

What is critical about algorithms is that they predict what transpires from their application. David Hume may object to this thesis as contrary to his own proposition that our knowledge of the world – that is, our perception of the way things happen – is empirical only and that causality of any description is fatuous. Nonetheless algorithms have their own dominion upon our vision of the world.

The Arabic source, al-Ḵwārizmī the man of Ḵwārizm (now Khiva), was a name given to the 9th-century mathematician Abū Ja‘far Muhammad ibn Mūsa, author of widely translated works on algebra and arithmetic.

It may injure some to know that much of their internal mechanism is governed metaphorically by mathematical prescription.  Personally I have always approved of rigorously precise computation.  Indeed often I find my ambition for clarity dissolves to a binary construction only which oddly survives abuse because I as regularly view the world from both vantages. It is perhaps an expression of that legal device noted by the introduction, “On the other hand, even if…”, a clever manipulation of the primary thesis.