# Questions tagged [runtime-analysis]

Questions about methods for estimating the increase in runtime of an algorithm as the input size increases.

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### Is there a system behind the magic of algorithm analysis?

There are lots of questions about how to analyze the running time of algorithms (see, e.g., runtime-analysis and algorithm-analysis). Many are similar, for instance those asking for a cost analysis ...
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### (When) is hash table lookup O(1)?

It is often said that hash table lookup operates in constant time: you compute the hash value, which gives you an index for an array lookup. Yet this ignores collisions; in the worst case, every item ...
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### How is this sorting algorithm Θ(n³) and not Θ(n²), worst-case?

I just starting taking a course on Data Structures and Algorithms and my teaching assistant gave us the following pseudo-code for sorting an array of integers: ...
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### Why is binary search faster than ternary search?

Searching an array of $N$ elements using binary search takes, in the worst case $\log_2 N$ iterations because, at each step we trim half of our search space. If, instead, we used 'ternary search', we'...
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### How to come up with the runtime of algorithms? [duplicate]

I've not gone much deep into CS. So, please forgive me if the question is not good or out of scope for this site. I've seen in many sites and books, the big-O notations like $O(n)$ which tell the ...
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### How is algorithm complexity modeled for functional languages?

Algorithm complexity is designed to be independent of lower level details but it is based on an imperative model, e.g. array access and modifying a node in a tree take O(1) time. This is not the case ...
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### Why is the log in the big-O of binary search not base 2?

I am new to understanding computer science algorithms. I understand the process of the binary search, but I am having a slight misunderstanding with its efficiency. In a size of $s = 2^n$ elements, ...
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### What exactly is polynomial time? [duplicate]

I'm trying to understand algorithm complexity, and a lot of algorithms are classified as polynomial. I couldn't find an exact definition anywhere. I assume it is the complexity that is not exponential....
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### Will hardware/implementation affect the time/space complexity of algorithms?

I’m not even a CS student, so this might be a stupid question, but please bear with me... In the pre-computer era, we can only implement an array data structure with something like an array of ...
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### Why is selection sort faster than bubble sort?

It is written on Wikipedia that "... selection sort almost always outperforms bubble sort and gnome sort." Can anybody please explain to me why is selection sort considered faster than bubble sort ...
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### How to describe algorithms, prove and analyse them?

Before reading The Art of Computer Programming (TAOCP), I have not considered these questions deeply. I would use pseudo code to describe algorithms, understand them and estimate the running time only ...
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### Do functions with slower growth than inverse Ackermann appear in runtime bounds?

Some complicated algorithms (union-find) have the nearly-constant inverse Ackermann function that appears in the asymptotic time complexity, and are worst-case time optimal if the nearly constant ...
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### How long does the Collatz recursion run?

I have the following Python code. ...
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### Why use comparisons instead of runtime for comparing two algorithms?

I notice that in a few CS research papers, to compare the efficiency of two algorithms, the total number of key comparison in the algorithms is used rather than the real computing times themselves. ...
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### Why does randomized Quicksort have O(n log n) worst-case runtime cost?

Randomized Quick Sort is an extension of Quick Sort in which pivot element is chosen randomly. What can be the worst case time complexity of this algo. According to me it should be $O(n^2)$. Worst ...
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### For what kind of data are hash table operations O(1)?

From the answers to (When) is hash table lookup O(1)?, I gather that hash tables have $O(1)$ worst-case behavior, at least amortized, when the data satisfies certain statistical conditions, and there ...
3k views

### Brute force Delaunay triangulation algorithm complexity

In the book "Computational Geometry: Algorithms and Applications" by Mark de Berg et al., there is a very simple brute force algorithm for computing Delaunay triangulations. The algorithm uses the ...
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### Are there any algorithms or data structures that need to find the median value of a set?

I have been reading this book for my class, Randomized Algorithms. In this particular book, there is a whole section dedicated to finding the median of an array using random selection, that leads to a ...
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### Potential function binary heap extract max O(1)

I need help figuring the potential function for a max heap so that extract max is completed in $O(1)$ amortised time. I should add that I do not have a good understanding of the potential method. I ...
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### A d-ary heap problem from CLRS

I got confused while solving the following problem (questions 1–3). Question A d-ary heap is like a binary heap, but(with one possible exception) non-leaf nodes have d children instead of 2 ...
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### Complexity of a naive algorithm for finding the longest Fibonacci substring

Given two symbols $\text{a}$ and $\text{b}$, let's define the $k$-th Fibonacci string as follows:  F(k) = \begin{cases} \text{b} &\mbox{if } k = 0 \\ \text{a} &\mbox{if } k = 1 \\ F(k-1) \...
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### Is there any standard for comparing runtimes experimentally?

My situation I am writing a paper presenting a software module I developed and I want to compare its runtime to other modules for the same task. I am aware of the drawbacks of runtime experiments, ...
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### Does Quicksort always have quadratic runtime if you choose a maximum element as pivot?

If you have a quick-sort algorithm, and you always select the smallest (or largest) element as your pivot; am I right in assuming that if you provide an already sorted data set, you will always get ...
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### Big O: Nested For Loop With Dependence

I was given a homework assignment with Big O. I'm stuck with nested for loops that are dependent on the previous loop. Here is a changed up version of my homework question, since I really do want to ...
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### Why is the dynamic programming algorithm of the knapsack problem not polynomial? [duplicate]

The dynamic programming algorithm for the knapsack problem has a time complexity of $O(nW)$ where $n$ is the number of items and $W$ is the capacity of the knapsack. Why is this not a polynomial-time ...
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### Time Complexity proof for Segment Tree implementation of the ranged sum problem

I understand that segment trees can be used to find the sum of sub array of $A$. And that this can done in $\mathcal{O}(\log n)$ time according to the tutorial here. However I'm not able to prove ...
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### Solving recurrence relation with two recursive calls

I'm studying the worst case runtime of quicksort under the condition that it will never do a very unbalanced partition for varying definitions of very. In order to do this I ask myself the question ...
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### Why is the complexity of negative-cycle-cancelling $O(V^2AUW)$?

We want to solve a minimal-cost-flow problem with a generic negative-cycle cancelling algorithm. That is, we start with a random valid flow, and then we do not pick any "good" negative cycles such as ...
763 views

### What constitutes one unit of time in runtime analysis?

When calculating runtime dependence on the input, what calculations are considered? For instance, I think I learned that array indexing as well as assignment statements don't get counted, why is that?
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### What's the time complexity of this algorithm? And Why?

I am stuck by analyzing the time complexity of the following algorithm: ...
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### What is the complexity of a bracketed search using mediants?

I'm trying to estimate the complexity of an algorithm I've written for the Reko decompiler, where I'm trying to "undo" the tranformation done by a compiler to an integer division by a constant $x / n$....
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### What is the running time of this recursive algorithm?

I made the following (ungolfed) Haskell program for the code golf challenge of computing the first $n$ values of A229037. This is my proposed solution to compute the $n$th value: ...
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### Given a fast and a slow computer, at what sizes does the fast computer running a slow algorithm beat the slow computer running a fast algorithm?

The source of this question comes from an undergraduate course I am taking, which covers an introduction to the analysis of algorithms. This is not for homework, but rather a question asked in CLRS. ...
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### What counts as an operation?

Apologies for the newbie question, but I am a bit confused about what exactly counts as a "simple operation" when working out the time complexity of an algorithm. In particular, why do we consider all ...
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### Understanding compression/encoding in linear time

I'm reading the paper N. J. Larsson, A. Moffat: Offline Dictionary-Based Compression, which describes a compression algorithm that, if I understand it correctly, is quite similar to Byte pair encoding....
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### 6-coloring of a tree in a distributed manner

I have some difficulties in understanding distributed algorithm for tree 6 - coloring in $O(\log^*n)$ time. The full description can be found in following paper: Parallel Symmetry-Breaking in Sparse ...