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Nicholas Kong

How to understand data structures from reading a textbook about it

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I have been a self-taught Java programmer for 2 years so I am competent in programming. What is difficult at the moment is understanding all of data structures even though I am equipped with the Java programming language? For example, if you were to tell me to implement a single or double rotations of some kind or a linked list or a sorted linked list or node, I would not know how to start.

 

I also have 5 months of self-taught game programming experience but it does not really help me in developing the strategies in building data structures. Data structures is like another beast in its self. In short, I feel I do not get it which probably means I am not seeing the big picture. I need suggestions.

 

I am using "Data Structures & Problem Solving Using Java" by Mark Allen Weiss as my book.

 

 

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How often do you write these data structures? IOW, do you purposefully write programs that have to use a queue, linked list, balanced tree, or graph? Do you do one or two problems out of the book and move on?

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Programming languages have nothing to do with data structures.  They are independent concepts, and data structures are mathematical and universal.

 

Think data structures as ways to organize data.  Do you sort alphabetically? perhaps by length of data? perhaps categorized by similarities?  perhaps by the order they are entered?  or by the order they are processed?

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