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Why is quicksort better than other sorting algorithms in practice?
In a standard algorithms course we are taught that quicksort is O(nlogn) on average and O(n2) in the worst case. At the same time, other sorting algorithms are studied which are O(nlogn) in the worst case (like mergesort and heapsort), and even linear time in the best case (like bubblesort) but with some additional needs of memory. Also, consider that students learn in basic programming courses that recursion is not really good in general because it could use too much memory, ... Does it have to do with the way memory works in computers? I know that some memories are way faster than others, but I don't know if that's the real reason for this counter-intuitive performance (when compared to theoretical estimates).
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