[seqfan] Re: automatic cross-refence

Giovanni Resta g.resta at iit.cnr.it
Tue Mar 3 07:54:43 CET 2009

Dmitry Kamenetsky wrote:

> I often see two sequences A and B, where A references B, but B does not 
> reference A. This means that a person reading B will have a hard time 
> finding A. Is it possible to have an automatic cross-reference engine 
> that completes these missing references? The idea is the following, for 
> each pair (A, B):  if A->B exists, but B->A doesn't exist then add a 
> cross-reference to A from B.

In principle you are right, but I think that in practice doing something 
automatic could be a bad idea, because there are some 
basic/general/important sequences which are linked hundreds of times by 
less important/more specific sequences.
Adding in automatic all the reverse links could be misleading and "hid"
the few significant links appearing in the important sequences.
Thinks at sequences like partitions, Fibonacci numbers, the squares, the 
primes and so on...

Besides, given the pair (A,B), if A->B exists then I can reach B from 
the link in A, and I can reach A by making a search for B, since, if 
A->B exists, then the id of B is in the record of A and will thus show 
up in a search. I do not think that making a simple search can be 
defined as "have a hard time finding".


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