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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Efficient decoding of prefix codes


We discuss representations of prefix codes and the corresponding storage space and decoding time requirements. We assume that a dictionary of words to be encoded has been defined and that a prefix code appropriate to the dictionary has been constructed. The encoding operation becomes simple given these assumptions and given an appropriate parsing strategy, therefore we concentrate on decoding. The application which led us to this work constrains the use of internal memory during the decode operation. As a result, we seek a method of decoding which has a small memory requirement.

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