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Bellman-Ford algorithm facts for kids

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In computer science, Bellman-Ford is an algorithm used to compute the shortest distances and paths from a single node within a graph to all other nodes.


It is more robust than Dijkstra's algorithm because it is able to handle graphs containing negative edge weights. It may be improved by noting that, if an iteration of the main loop of the algorithm completes without making any changes, the algorithm can be immediately completed, as future iterations will not make any changes. Its runtime is O(|V|\cdot |E|) time, where |V| and |E| are the number of nodes and edges respectively.


function BellmanFord(list nodes, list edges, node source) is

distance := list predecessor := list // Predecessor holds shortest paths

    // Step 1: initialize 
    for each node n in nodes do

distance[n] := inf // Initialize the distance to all nodes to infinity predecessor[n] := null // And having a null predecessor


distance[source] := 0 // The distance from the source to itself is zero

    // Step 2: relax edges repeatedly
    repeat |nodes|−1 times:
        for each edge (u, v) with weight w in edges do
            if distance[u] + w < distance[v] then

distance[v] := distance[u] + w predecessor[v] := u

    // Step 3: check for negative-weight cycles
    for each edge (u, v) with weight w in edges do
        if distance[u] + w < distance[v] then
            error "Graph contains a negative-weight cycle"

    return distance, predecessor
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