Keep Calm and Sort 0123456789


If we give some numbers to a computer between 0 and 9 in random order, can the computer sort it to 0123456789? It can, but with some efforts involved. A computer is like a child who needs detailed instruction to do things. If we fail to provide detailed command, it will not give us the desired result. Sorting numbers seems like an easy task, even for children. But the computer sees things in a quite different way.

We will play around with the computer and find out how to tell it to sort the 0123456789. The computer only does two things: computing and storing information. It also understands merely a machine language which is not easy to learn by a human. Luckily, the machine languages can be interpreted into a programming language that can be learned and mastered by us.

We also can use some available software to tell the computer to do some commands. Microsoft with its WYSIWYG (What You See Is What You Get) system also gives you ways to interact with the computer and gives the desired results easily. If you want to sort 0123456789, here is what we can do.

Sorting with Programming Language

We can do sorting in any programming language you like with sorting algorithms. A sorting algorithm is a kind of algorithm that puts things inside some list or array in a certain order. Most people use sorting in two orders: numerical order for sorting number such as 0123456789 or lexicographical order for sorting something alphabetically.

There are 4 popular sorting algorithms. The first one is called the simple sort. It is efficient on small data, yet it is not effective and  efficient on a large size of data. Two of the simplest sorts are insertion sort and selection sort. It is commonly faster compared to the selection sort in practice. Somehow, selection sort uses less writing so it is preferred when write performance is a limiting factor.

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The next one is the efficient sort. This sort is categorized by its average time complexity. The most common sorting algorithm is heap sort, merge sort, and quick sort. Each has advantages and disadvantages. The simplest in implementation was merge sort, while quicksort is the most complex one.

The third one is bubble sort and variants such as cocktail sort. These are simple but highly inefficient sorting algorithm. These sorting algorithms are frequently seen in textbook for a programming language or used for theoretical interest because of its easy analysis. However, it is rarely used in practice due to its non-efficient characteristic.

The last one is the distribution sort. Distribution sort consists of a sorting algorithm where the data is distributed into multiple structures and then gathered on the output. Distribution sort consists of counting sort, bucket sort, and radix sort.

You can choose any of those sorting algorithms to fulfill your desire in sorting. If you want to sort 0123456789, the simple sort is recommended. It is the most efficient sorting algorithm for small data.

Sorting with Microsoft Excel

Yap! You read it correctly. Microsoft Excel is a good tool for processing data. If the data is in number, Microsoft Excel can do many things to it. Sorting is one of the things that can be done in Microsoft Excel. Whether you want to sort a small or large data, Microsoft Excel can do it for you.

First of all, you need to type your data in Microsoft Excel. Type in one column to make the sorting easier. Select the cell in the column you want to sort. Then, click the Data tab and choose Sort & Filter group. You are to choose Sort Smallest to Largest to get a result like 0123456789. Make sure that all numbers are stored as numbers. So, it will give the result as you desired.

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We understand that telling a computer to do a thing is not simple. We need some specific tools or languages to be able to communicate with the computer. We also need to tell the computer in a detailed manner so it will give us the desired result.

To sort things, we can do the hard way such as writing it from the scratch in the programming language we mastered the most. We can also use available software such as Microsoft Excel to do sorting for us. Whatever way we choose is not a problem as long as it helps us reach our goal of sorting things such as 0123456789.

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