Quick Sort
This is probably the most common sort used in practice, since
it is usually the quickest in practice. It utilizes the idea of a
partition (that can be done without an auxiliary array) with
recursion to achieve this efficiency.
Quick sort relies on the partition. Basically, a partition works
like this:
Given an array of n values, you must randomly pick an
element in the array to partition by. Once you have picked this
value, you must compare all of the rest of the elements to this
value. If they are greater, put them to the “right” of the
partition element, and if they are less, put them to the “left” of
the partition element.
When you are done with the partition, you KNOW that the
partition element is in its CORRECTLY sorted location.
In fact, after you partition an array, you are left with all the
elements to the left of the partition element in the array, that
still need to be sorted, and all of the elements to the right of the
partition element in the array that also need to be sorted. And
if you sort those two sides, the entire array will be sorted!
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break down the sorting problem into two smaller sorting
problems. Thus, the code for quick sort, at a real general level
looks like:
1) Partition the array with respect to a random element.
2) Sort the left part of the array, using Quick Sort
3) Sort the right part of the array, using Quick Sort.
Once again, since this is a recursive algorithm, we need a base
case, that does not make recursive calls. (A terminating
condition.
..) Our terminating condition will be sorting an array
of one element. We know that array is already sorted.
Here is an illustration of Quick Sort:
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 Spring '09
 Guha
 Computer Science, Recursion, Sort, Quick Sort, partition element

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