The foundation paper on pessimal algorithms is:

Broder, Andrei and Stolfi, Jorge,
*Pessimal Algorithms and Simplexity Analysis*,
ACM SIGACT News, Volume 16, Number 3, Fall 1984, pages 16-3.49 through 16-3.53.

They state their objective as: "we must look for an algorithm that does indeed progress steadily towards its stated goal even though it may have very little enthusiasm for (or even a manifest aversion to) actually getting there".

Some algorithms they analyze include:

- reluctant search, which is like binary search, but it looks in the wrong half each time until stumbling over the desired value when it cannot avoid it any longer.
- sloppiest path problems
- the method of feeblest descent
- backward-first search for enumerating all
*n* vertices of a connected graph G.
- slowsort, "a perfect illustration of the
*multiply and surrender* paradigm", which involves spinning off as many subproblems as possible until they are so simple that their solution can no longer be postponed.

Exercise for the reader of this node: compare the simplexity of slowsort with that of generating all the n! permutations of the input sequence until one finds a sequence in ascending order.