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You want to find Samuel Jones in the local telephone book. Would you start at page 1 and then go on from there, page by page? You don't do this because you know an important fact about telephone books - the entries are in alphabetic order. So what you do is make a guess - J is about halfway down the alphabet and so you open the telephone book around half way.
The page you see has names starting with N. So you know J will be in the first half of the book. Next you open a page about halfway down the first half - the page has 'H'. So now Jones must be in the upper half of this section. You are carrying out a 'Binary search' algorithm. Notice that after only two guesses you are getting much closer to the answer. If you were carrying out a serial search, you would still be at page 2.
If the list is large and changing often, with items constantly being added or deleted, then the time it takes to constantly re-order the list to allow for a binary search might be longer than a simple serial search in the first place. If the list is large and static e. If the list is small then it might be simpler to just use a linear search 4.
If the list is random, then linear is the only way 5. If the list is skewed so that the most often searched items are placed at the beginning, then on average, a linear search might be better. Challenge see if you can find out one extra fact on this topic that we haven't already told you.
Click on this link: Revision resources include exam question practice and coursework guides. Topics include network systems, database, data communications, legal issues such as the Data Protection Act, measurement and control, the OSI model along with the ethics and social effects of ICT at work and home.. Sometimes, you may be doing a binary search without realising it. Example You want to find Samuel Jones in the local telephone book.
No Is item less than criteria? Is Binary searching better than serial searching? Challenge see if you can find out one extra fact on this topic that we haven't already told you Click on this link: