Winograd small convolution algorithm

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A general strategy for computing linear and cyclic convolutions by applying the polynomial version of the Chinese remainder theorem [a1]. For polynomials and of degree and , respectively, the linear convolution

has degree , where . For any polynomial of degree , the linear convolution can be computed by computing the product modulo , i.e.,

The Chinese remainder theorem permits this computation to be localized. Choose a factorization

into relatively prime factors. The Winograd small convolution algorithm proceeds by first computing the reduced polynomials

followed by the local computations

and is completed by combining these local computations using the formula


is a complete system of idempotents corresponding to the initial factorization of .

S. Winograd [a2] expanded on this general strategy by developing bilinear algorithms for computing the product of polynomials modulo a polynomial. Within this general strategy, these bilinear algorithms permit one to use small efficient algorithms as building blocks for larger-size algorithms [a3].


[a1] A. Borodin, I. Munro, "Computational complexity and algebraic and numeric problems" , Amer. Elsevier (1975)
[a2] S. Winograd, "Some bilinear forms whose multiplicative complexity depends on the field of constants" Math. Systems Th. , 10 (1977) pp. 169–180
[a3] R.C. Agarwal, J.W. Cooley, "New algorithms for digital convolution" IEEE Trans. Acoustics, Speech and Signal Processing , 25 (1977) pp. 392–410
How to Cite This Entry:
Winograd small convolution algorithm. R. Tolimieri (originator), Encyclopedia of Mathematics. URL:
This text originally appeared in Encyclopedia of Mathematics - ISBN 1402006098