A data structure is a way of organizing and storing data in a computer so that it can be accessed and manipulated efficiently. It defines the relationship between the data, how the data is stored, and the operations that can be performed on the data.
Types of Data Structures:
There are many types of data structures available, each with its own strengths and weaknesses. Here are some commonly used data structures:
An array is a collection of elements stored at contiguous memory locations. It allows random access to elements based on their index.
2. Linked List
A linked list is a sequence of nodes where each node contains a reference to its successor node. It allows efficient insertion and deletion operations.
A stack is a Last-In-First-Out (LIFO) data structure where elements are added and removed from one end only.
A queue is a First-In-First-Out (FIFO) data structure where elements are added at one end and removed from the other end.
A tree is a hierarchical data structure with nodes connected by edges. It has a root node and each node can have zero or more child nodes.
Data Structure Operations:
Data structures support various operations to manipulate the stored data efficiently. Some common operations include:
The process of adding an element to a data structure at a specific position or at the end. Deletion
The process of removing an element from a data structure, either from a specific position or based on certain conditions. Searching
The process of finding the location of an element in a data structure based on a given value. Sorting
The process of arranging the elements in a specific order, such as ascending or descending. Traversing
The process of visiting each element in a data structure exactly once to perform a specific operation.
Data structures are essential for efficient data management and manipulation in computer programs. By understanding different types of data structures and their operations, you can choose the most appropriate one for your application and optimize its performance.