August 4th, 2007

Multiple Data Structures

At work the other day I was talking with my coworker M., and we were discussing good technical questions for experienced hires. He pointed at that the basis for his technical questions were finding a problem that required multiple data structures to solve. He pointed out that novice programmers straight out of college hate solving a problem with multiple data structures. I thought about what he said, and I believe that for the most part he is right.

Then I thought, wait, I hate multiple data structures as well. Have I not grown as a programmer? Then I realized I use multiple data structures all the time. I just think of them as objects/component of the solution which support the main data structure. I admittedly still try to use as few data structures as possible, but I like to think of that as economy of design, which in theory leads to simpler code.