# What Is Data Structure Explain With Example?

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Heather Bennett

What Is Data Structure Explain With Example?

Data structure is a fundamental concept in computer science that refers to the way data is organized, stored, and accessed in a computer’s memory. It provides a systematic way to manage and manipulate data efficiently. Understanding data structures is essential for writing efficient algorithms and solving complex problems.

## Types of Data Structures

There are several types of data structures, each with its own strengths and weaknesses. Some commonly used data structures include:

• Arrays: An array is a collection of elements of the same type that are stored in contiguous memory locations. It allows random access to elements based on their index.
• Linked Lists: A linked list is a collection of nodes where each node contains data and a reference to the next node. Linked lists are dynamic in nature and allow efficient insertion and deletion at any position.
• Stacks: A stack is an abstract data type that follows the Last-In-First-Out (LIFO) principle. It allows insertion and deletion only at one end – the top of the stack.
• Queues: A queue is an abstract data type that follows the First-In-First-Out (FIFO) principle.

It allows insertion at one end – the rear, and deletion at the other end – the front.

• Trees: Trees are hierarchical data structures that consist of nodes connected by edges. Each node can have zero or more child nodes, forming a tree-like structure.
• Graphs: Graphs are non-linear data structures that consist of vertices connected by edges. They can be used to represent relationships between objects.

Let’s take a closer look at an example of a linked list. Consider a scenario where we need to store and manage a list of names. We can use a linked list to accomplish this task efficiently.

Step 1: Create the first node of the linked list, called the head node. The head node contains the first name and a reference to the next node (initially null).

Step 2: Add more nodes to the linked list by creating new nodes and connecting them using references. Each node contains a name and a reference to the next node.

Step 3: To access or modify data in the linked list, start from the head node and follow the references until you reach the desired node.

Step 4: To insert or delete data in the linked list, update references accordingly to maintain proper connections between nodes.

• Dynamic Size: Linked lists can grow or shrink dynamically based on the number of elements.
• Efficient Insertion and Deletion: Adding or removing elements in a linked list requires updating only a few references, making it efficient compared to other data structures like arrays.
• No Wasted Memory: Linked lists use memory efficiently as they only allocate memory for elements added to the list, unlike arrays that have fixed sizes.