`what does sift down do in heap sort (min heap) `

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Answer from Sia

Posted 7 months ago

The "sift down" operation in a min-heap is used during the heap sort algorithm and when removing the root from the heap. It restores the heap property after the root has been removed and replaced by the last element in the heap. Here's what it does:

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It compares the new root to its children and swaps it with the smaller child if necessary

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This process is repeated down the tree until the node is in a position where it is smaller than both of its children, or it becomes a leaf node

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The purpose is to ensure that every parent node is smaller than its child nodes, maintaining the min-heap property

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Sift down is essential for maintaining the heap after the extraction of the minimum element, which is the root in a min-heap

In summary, the sift down operation is crucial for the integrity of the heap structure, particularly after the removal of the minimum element in a min-heap during heap sort.

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