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Sorting/Searching and File I/O

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  1. Sorting/Searching and File I/O • Sorting • Searching • CLI: File Input • CLI: File Output • GUI: File Chooser • Reading for this lecture: L&L 10.4-10.5, 10.8

  2. Sorting • Sorting is the process of arranging a list of items in a particular order • The sorting process is based on specific value(s) • Sorting a list of test scores in ascending numeric order • Sorting a list of people alphabetically by last name • There are many algorithms, which vary in efficiency, for sorting a list of items • We will examine two specific algorithms: • Selection Sort • Insertion Sort

  3. Selection Sort • The approach of Selection Sort: • Select a value and put it in its final place in the list • Repeat for all other values • In more detail: • Find the smallest value in the list • Switch it with the value in the first position • Find the next smallest value in the list • Switch it with the value in the second position • Repeat until all values are in their proper places

  4. Selection Sort • An example: original: 3 9 6 1 2 smallest is 1: 1 9 6 3 2 smallest is 2: 1 2 6 3 9 smallest is 3: 1 2 3 6 9 smallest is 6: 1 2 3 6 9 • Each time, the smallest remaining value is found and exchanged with the element in the "next" position to be filled

  5. Swapping Two Values • The processing of the selection sort algorithm includes the swapping of two values • Swapping requires three assignment statements and a temporary storage location of the same type as the data being swapped: int first = 1, second = 2; int temp = first; first = second; // == 2 now second = temp; // == 1 now

  6. Polymorphism in Sorting • Recall that a class that implements the Comparable interface defines a compareTo method that returns the relative order of its objects • We can use polymorphism to develop a generic sort for any set of Comparable objects • The sorting method accepts as a parameter an array of Comparable objects • That way, one method can be used to sort a group of People, or Books, or whatever as long as the class implements Comparable

  7. Selection Sort • The sorting method doesn't "care" what type of object it is sorting, it just needs to be able to call the compareTo method of that object • That is guaranteed by using Comparable as the parameter type passed to the sorting method • Each Comparable class has a compareTo method that determines what it means for one object of that class to be “less than another” • See PhoneList.java (page 505) • See Sorting.java (page 506), specifically the selectionSort method • See Contact.java (page 507-508)

  8. Insertion Sort • The approach of Insertion Sort: • Pick any item and insert it into its proper place in a sorted sublist • Repeat until all items have been inserted • In more detail: • Consider the first item to be a sorted sublist (of one item) • Insert the second item into the sorted sublist, shifting the first item as needed to make room to insert the new addition • Insert the third item into the sorted sublist (of two items), shifting items as necessary • Repeat until all values are inserted into their proper positions

  9. Insertion Sort • An example: original: 3 9 6 1 2 insert 9: 3 9 6 1 2 insert 6: 3 6 9 1 2 insert 1: 1 3 6 9 2 insert 2: 1 2 3 6 9 • See Sorting.java (page 506-507), specifically the insertionSort method

  10. Comparing Sorts • The Selection and Insertion sort algorithms are similar in efficiency • They both have outer loops that scan all elements, and inner loops that compare the value of the outer loop with almost all values in the list • Approximately n2 number of comparisons are made to sort a list of size n • We therefore say that these sorts are of order n2 • Other sorts are more efficient: order n log2 n

  11. Searching • Searching is the process of finding a target element within a group of items called the search pool • The target may or may not be in the search pool • We want to perform the search efficiently, minimizing the number of comparisons • Let's look at two classic searching approaches: linear search and binary search • As we did with sorting, we'll implement the searches with polymorphic Comparable parameters

  12. Linear Search • A linear search begins at one end of a list and examines each element in turn • Eventually, either the item is found or the end of the list is encountered • See PhoneList2.java (page 512-513) • See Searching.java (page 514-515), specifically the linearSearch method

  13. Binary Search • A binary search assumes the list of items in the search pool is sorted • It eliminates a large part of the search pool with a single comparison • A binary search first examines the middle element of the list -- if it matches the target, the search is over • If it doesn't, only half of the remaining elements need be searched • Since they are sorted, the target can only be in one half of the other

  14. Binary Search • The process continues by comparing the target to the middle element of the remaining viable candidates • Each comparison eliminates approximately half of the remaining data • Eventually, the target is found or there are no remaining viable candidates (and the target has not been found) • See PhoneList2.java (page 512-513) • See Searching.java (page 514-515), specifically the binarySearch method

  15. Binary Versus Linear Search • The efficiency of binary search is good for the retrieval of data from a sorted group • However, the group must be sorted initially • As items are added to the group, it must be kept in sorted order • The sorting process creates inefficiency • If you add data to a group much more often than you search it, it may be worse to use a binary search than a linear search

  16. CLI File Input • In a CLI, we want the user to select a file within a directory system so that its contents can be read and processed • However, we must rely on the user typing in the file name (including any required path name) • We can get the file name via a Scanner on System.in using the nextLine method • We can read the file data via a Scanner on a File object using the nextLine method again

  17. CLI File Input: Example import java.util.Scanner; import java.io.*; public class FileDisplay { public static void main (String [] args) throws IOException { Scanner scan = new Scanner(System.in); System.out.println("Enter name of file to display"); File file = new File(scan.nextLine()); scan = new Scanner (file); // done with keyboard while (scan.hasNext()) // ctl-D returns false System.out.println(scan.nextLine()); } }

  18. CLI File Output • In a CLI, we want the user to create a file within a directory system so that its contents can be written (or overwritten!) • Be careful: Your code should check for a file by that name and ask user if OK to overwrite it. • Again, we rely on the user typing in the file name • Again, we can get the file name via a Scanner on System.in using the nextLine method • We can write the file data via a PrintStream on a File object using the println method (System.out is a PrintStream object)

  19. CLI File Output: Example import java.util.Scanner; import java.io.*; public class FileWrite { public static void main (String [] args) throws IOException { // Get filename and instantiate File object as before PrintStream out = new PrintStream(file); // Use ctl-D to close System.in // so scan.hasNext() will return false while (scan.hasNext()) { String line = scan.nextLine(); out.println(line); } out.close(); } }

  20. GUI File I/O • In a GUI, requiring the user to enter a file name (including a path name or not) is considered to be NOT very user friendly • We want our program to offer a choice of the available files so that the user can: • Move around within the available directories • Select one of the files shown in a directory

  21. File Chooser in GUI’s • Recall that a dialog box is a small window that "pops up" to interact with the user for a brief, specific purpose • A file chooser, the JFileChooser class, supports a simple dialog box for this process • See DisplayFile.java (page 521)

  22. Example: DisplayFile code segment JFileChooser chooser = new JFileChooser(); int status = chooser.showOpenDialog(frame); // There is also a showSaveDialog(frame) if (status != JFileChooser.APPROVE_OPTION) ta.setText ("No File Chosen"); else { // read file File file = chooser.getSelectedFile(); Scanner scan = new Scanner (file); ...

  23. File Input/Output • Notice that the main method in all three of these examples indicates that the code may throw an IOException • If an error such as “file not found” occurs during a file operation, an IOException is generated by the system • We’ll study exceptions in the next lecture