Types of Linked Lists You Should Know About

A linked list is like a train where each bogie is connected with links. Different types of linked lists exist to make lives easier, like an image viewer, music player, or when you navigate through web pages. 

What Are the Types of Linked Lists?

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There are four key types of linked lists:

  • Singly linked lists
  • Doubly linked lists
  • Circular linked lists
  • Circular doubly linked lists

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What is a Singly Linked List?

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A singly linked list is a unidirectional linked list. So, you can only traverse it in one direction, i.e., from head node to tail node.

What is a Doubly Linked List?

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A doubly linked list is a bi-directional linked list. So, you can traverse it in both directions. Unlike singly linked lists, its nodes contain one extra pointer called the previous pointer. This pointer points to the previous node.

What is a Circular Linked List?

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A circular Linked list is a unidirectional linked list. So, you can traverse it in only one direction. But this type of linked list has its last node pointing to the head node. So while traversing, you need to be careful and stop traversing when you revisit the head node.

What is a Circular Doubly Linked List?

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A circular doubly linked list is a mixture of a doubly linked list and a circular linked list. Like the doubly linked list, it has an extra pointer called the previous pointer, and similar to the circular linked list, its last node points at the head node. This type of linked list is the bi-directional list. So, you can traverse it in both directions.

Next, you will explore some of the applications of these linked lists.

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What Are the Applications of Different Types of Linked Lists?

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  • A linked list is used to implement stack and queues
  • A linked list is used to represent sparse matrices
  • You can implement an image viewer using a circular linked list
  • You can use the linked list concept to navigate through web pages
  • You can use a circular doubly linked list to implement a Fibonacci heap
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Next Steps

Diving into the specifics of "Singly Linked Lists" can be your next stop. Linked lists are made up of nodes that point to the next node. Linked lists are dynamic and have faster insertion/deletion time complexities.

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