#### Overview of this book

Choosing the right data structure is pivotal to optimizing the performance and scalability of applications. This new edition of Hands-On Data Structures and Algorithms with Python will expand your understanding of key structures, including stacks, queues, and lists, and also show you how to apply priority queues and heaps in applications. You’ll learn how to analyze and compare Python algorithms, and understand which algorithms should be used for a problem based on running time and computational complexity. You will also become confident organizing your code in a manageable, consistent, and scalable way, which will boost your productivity as a Python developer. By the end of this Python book, you’ll be able to manipulate the most important data structures and algorithms to more efficiently store, organize, and access data in your applications.
Preface
Free Chapter
Python Data Types and Structures
Introduction to Algorithm Design
Algorithm Design Techniques and Strategies
Stacks and Queues
Trees
Heaps and Priority Queues
Hash Tables
Graphs and Algorithms
Searching
Sorting
Selection Algorithms
String Matching Algorithms
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Index

# Linear search

The search operation is used to find out the index position of a given data item in a list of data items. If the searched item is available in the given list of data items, then the search algorithm returns the index position where it is located; otherwise, it returns that the item is not found. Here, the index position is the location of the desired item in the given list.

The simplest approach to search for an item in a list is to search linearly, in which we look for items one by one in the whole list. Let’s take an example of six list items `{60, 1, 88, 10, 11, 100}` to understand the linear search algorithm, as shown in Figure 10.1:

Figure 10.1: An example of linear search

The preceding list has elements that can be accessed through the index. To find an element in the list, we can search for the given element linearly one by one. This technique traverses the list of elements by using the index to move from the beginning of the list to the...