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The following illustrates the relative strengths of various sorting algorithms. Bubble sort, Insertion sort and Quick sort will be familiar to you; the others are there to illustrate how fast an algorithm can be! Click on the displays to start or reset them. The values shown at the bottom are the number of operations performed - these will change depending upon the initial random mix.

Software/Applets used on this page

The MNSort applet shows a graphical represenation of a number of sort algorithms. The applet has been written in JavaScript especially for this site by davidviner.com in order to replace an older Java-based applet that no longer runs on certain devices such as tablets or smart phones.


This applet uses HTML 5 canvas and therefore requires a fully compliant HTML 5 browser. IE9 or any recent version of Firefox or Chrome are fine - do not report errors to us if your web browser is any older than those listed here.

Glossary

algorithm

A set of precise instructions which, if followed, will solve a problem.

Full Glossary List

This question appears in the following syllabi:

SyllabusModuleSectionTopic
AQA A-Level (UK - Pre-2017)D1AlgorithmsSorting
AQA A2 Further Maths 2017Discrete MathsAlgorithms and Graph Theory - ExtraSorting
AQA AS/A2 Further Maths 2017Discrete MathsAlgorithms and Graph Theory - ExtraSorting
Edexcel A-Level (UK - Pre-2017)D1AlgorithmsSorting
Edexcel AS Further Maths 2017Decision Maths 1Algorithms and Graph TheorySorting
Edexcel AS/A2 Further Maths 2017Decision Maths 1Algorithms and Graph TheorySorting
OCR A-Level (UK - Pre-2017)D1AlgorithmsSorting
OCR AS Further Maths 2017Discrete MathsAlgorithmsSorting
OCR MEI AS Further Maths 2017Modelling with AlgorithmsSorting and PackingSorting
OCR-MEI A-Level (UK - Pre-2017)D1AlgorithmsSorting
Universal (all site questions)AAlgorithmsSorting