Programming Language

The coding language used for all of the implementations is Java. The programs use a wide range of standard Java idioms, and the text includes concise descriptions of each construct. Mike Schidlowsky and I developed a style of Java coding based on ADTs that we feel is an effective way to present the algorithms and data structures as real programs. We have striven for elegant, compact, efficient, and portable implementations. The style is consistent whenever possible, so programs that are similar look similar. A goal of this tutorial is to present the algorithms in as simple and direct a form as possible. For many of the algorithms, the similarities remain regardless of which language is used: Dijkstra's algorithm (to pick one prominent example) is Dijkstra's algorithm, whether expressed in Algol-60, Basic, Fortran, Smalltalk, Ada, Pascal, C, C++, Modula-3, PostScript, Java, Python, or any of the countless other coding languages and environments in which it has proved to be an effective graph-processing method. On the one hand, our code is informed by experience with implementing algorithms in these and numerous other languages (C and C++ versions of this tutorial are also available); on the other hand, some of the properties of some of these languages are informed by their designers' experience with some of the algorithms and data structures that we consider in this tutorial. In the end, we feel that the code presented in the tutorial both precisely defines the algorithms and is useful in practice.