# Did Menezes et al. switch the letters $\mu$ and $\lambda$ in Floyd's cycle detection note 3.8?

The letters $$\mu$$ and $$\lambda$$ are usually used to represent, respectively, the length of the tail of the graph and length of the cycle in the graph. But Menezes on note 3.8, page 91 (or PDF-page 6), seems to have swapped their roles.

$\mu$ and $$\lambda$$ in Floyd's cycle detection algorithm">

There's nothing wrong with the description, but isn't there a usual-role swap there?

• I don't know which usage is more common, but I can't see why it matters much either way. It's just notation, right? – D.W. Feb 11 at 23:35
• Right. It's just notation, but I think it was accidental on their part because no one in their sane mind would reverse usage like that just for fun. Since I'm rather a beginner on the subject, I thought of throwing the ball to you guys. – R. Chopin Feb 13 at 17:58