Introduction to Data Structure

Data structures are a way of organizing and storing data in a computer so that it can be accessed and modified efficiently. Different types of data structures are suited to different kinds of applications, and some are highly specialized for specific tasks. Some common data structures include:

  • Arrays: An array is a contiguous block of memory that stores a fixed number of elements of the same type. Arrays are indexed, so you can access and modify individual elements by specifying their position in the array.
  • Linked lists: A linked list is a linear data structure that consists of a series of nodes, where each node stores a value and a reference to the next node in the list. Linked lists are useful for inserting and deleting elements from the list, as you only need to update the references between the nodes.
  • Stacks: A stack is a Last In First Out (LIFO) data structure that allows you to push and pop elements from the top of the stack. Stacks are often used to store temporary data or to implement undo/redo functionality.
  • Queues: A queue is a First In First Out (FIFO) data structure that allows you to enqueue and dequeue elements from either end of the queue. Queues are often used to store data that needs to be processed in a specific order.
  • Trees: A tree is a hierarchical data structure that consists of nodes organized into a tree-like shape. Each node in a tree has one or more child nodes, and the top node is called the root. Trees are useful for storing and searching for data that has a natural hierarchy, such as the structure of a file system.
  • Hash tables: A hash table is a data structure that uses a hash function to map keys to indices in an array. Hash tables are efficient for storing and retrieving data, and are used in many applications, such as databases and programming languages.