I am looking to formalise an algorithm that I have created, however, I am having trouble knowing how to correctly use Greek symbols (such as Epsilon, Omega etc.). Are there any guides/standardised way of doing this?

This is an example of an algorithm that was previously worked on that a college formalised.

formalised pseudo code

Does a "global definition" for ω0 or μ exist, or do those symbols have to be defined in the context of the algorithm?

closed as unclear what you're asking by gnat, Dan Pichelman, Doc Brown, psr, Jim G. Jul 2 '16 at 14:12

Please clarify your specific problem or add additional details to highlight exactly what you need. As it's currently written, it’s hard to tell exactly what you're asking. See the How to Ask page for help clarifying this question. If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

  • The people on this site like to give their identifiers carpal tunnel syndrome-inducing "meaningful" names with lots of internal capitalization. Instead of "theta," think "innerLoopCounter" or "geeIAmSoProfessionalLookAtMyVariableNamesTheyAreSoMeaningful." It's annoying. – user1172763 Jun 28 '16 at 14:56
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  • The problem isn't my code being readable, it's how to understand were it is appropriate to use Greek symbols when creating pseudo code for an academic publication. – Colin747 Jun 28 '16 at 15:08
  • Maybe this is a question for Academia? – Jan Doggen Jun 28 '16 at 15:13
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    @VincentSavard perhaps I should edit my question to more clearly define what it is I'm asking. My problem is that I do not know myself when to use these symbols or what they mean or when to use them - it is this I am seeking help with. (It will be a scientific readership). – Colin747 Jun 28 '16 at 15:20

There are (almost) no "generally reserved greek symbols" in mathematical or algorithmic texts. The only exceptions I can think of are

  • the letter π=3.1415926....,
  • the letter ε for "a small real value"
  • the letter Σ for summations
  • the letter Π for produkts

Even those can have a different meaning depending on the context, but when someone uses these symbols without an explicit definition, most readers will understand them.

Of course, in some specific contexts like computational complexity theory, there are some conventions like the Big-O notation, where Ω and Θ have special meanings. But as long as your text is not in that context, you need to define any symbol you are going to use (maybe with the few exceptions mentioned above) , otherwise people will have problems to understand your text.

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