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Python for Bioinformatics by Kinser

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16 Measuring Complexity

The genome consists of many regions that have varying complexity. Some are full of repeating elements, some are seemingly random, and some code for functions. Measures of complexity of strings can lead to insights into functionality of portions of the genome. This chapter will explore several simple methods of measuring complexity.

16.1 Linguistic Complexity

Linguistic complexity is a loosely defined term that measures variations in a string. For a text string, this measure can be the ratio of the number of unique words to the total number of words. Obviously, if no words are repeated, then this ratio is 1. If a large text contains very few unique words, then this measure becomes quite small. This is an easy program to ...

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