Sorting is nothing but storage of data in sorted order, it can be in ascending or descending order. The term Sorting comes into picture with the term Searching. There are so many things in our real life that we need to search, like a particular record in database, roll numbers in merit list, a particular telephone number, any particular page in a book etc.
Sorting arranges data in a sequence which makes searching easier. Every record which is going to be sorted will contain one key. Based on the key the record will be sorted. For example, suppose we have a record of students, every such record will have the following data:
Here Student roll no. can be taken as key for sorting the records in ascending or descending order. Now suppose we have to search a Student with roll no. 15, we don't need to search the complete record we will simply search between the Students with roll no. 10 to 20.
There are many techniques for sorting. Implementation of particular sorting technique depends upon situation. Sorting techniques mainly depends on two parameters. First parameter is the execution time of program, which means time taken for execution of program. Second is the space, which means space taken by the program.
There are many types of Sorting techniques, differentiated by their efficiency and space requirements. Following are some sorting techniques which we will be covering in next sections.