# Mathematics and Computer Science: Coping with Finiteness

```@article{Knuth1976MathematicsAC,
title={Mathematics and Computer Science: Coping with Finiteness},
author={Donald Ervin Knuth},
journal={Science},
year={1976},
volume={194},
pages={1235 - 1242}
}```
• D. Knuth
• Published 17 December 1976
• Philosophy
• Science
By presenting these examples, I have tried to illustrate four main points. 1) Finite numbers can be really enormous, and the known universe is very small. Therefore the distinction between finite and infinite is not as relevant as the distinction between realistic and unrealistic. 2) In many cases there are subtle ways to solve very large problems quickly, in spite of the fact that they appear at first to require examination of too many possibilities. 3) There are also cases where we can prove…
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