Sunday, March 1, 2009

Data structure interview questions Part 1

Data structure interview question: What is data structure?
Answer:A data structure is a way of organizing data that considers not only the items stored, but also their relationship to each other. Advance knowledge about the relationship between data items allows designing of efficient algorithms for the manipulation of data.

Data structure interview question: List out the areas in which data structures are applied extensively? 
Answer: Ø Compiler Design,
Ø Operating System,
Ø Database Management System,
Ø Statistical analysis package,
Ø Numerical Analysis,
Ø Graphics,
Ø Artificial Intelligence,
Ø Simulation

Data structure interview question:What are the major data structures used in the following areas of RDBMS, Network data model & Hierarchical data model.
Answer: Ø RDBMS – Array (i.e. Array of structures)
Ø Network data model – Graph
Ø Hierarchical data model – Trees

Data structure interview question: If you are using C language to implement the heterogeneous linked list, what pointer type will you use?
Answer: The heterogeneous linked list contains different data types in its nodes and we need a link, pointer to connect them. It is not possible to use ordinary pointers for this. So we go for void pointer. Void pointer is capable of storing pointer to any type as it is a generic pointer type.

Data structure interview question: Minimum number of queues needed to implement the priority queue?
Answer: Two. One queue is used for actual storing of data and another for storing priorities.

Data structure interview question: What is the data structures used to perform recursion?
Answer: Stack. Because of its LIFO (Last In First Out) property it remembers its ‘caller’ so knows whom to return when the function has to return. Recursion makes use of system stack for storing the return addresses of the function calls. Every recursive function has its equivalent iterative (non-recursive) function. Even when such equivalent iterative procedures are written, explicit stack is to be used.

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