NP- /N-P/ Pref. Extremely. Used To Modify Adjectives Describing A Level Or Quality Of Difficulty

HomeFortune CookiesJargon File

NP- /N-P/ pref.

Extremely. Used to modify adjectives
describing a level or quality of difficulty; the connotation is
often `more so than it should be' This is generalized from the
computer-science terms `NP-hard' and `NP-complete';
NP-complete problems all seem to be very hard, but so far no one
has found a proof that they are. NP is
the set of Nondeterministic-Polynomial algorithms, those that can
be completed by a nondeterministic Turing machine in an amount of
time that is a polynomial function of the size of the input; a
solution for one NP-complete problem would solve all the others.
"Coding a BitBlt implementation to perform correctly in every case
is NP-annoying."

Note, however, that strictly speaking this usage is misleading;
there are plenty of easy problems in class NP. NP-complete
problems are hard not because they are in class NP, but because
they are the hardest problems in class NP.