permutation sort


Definition: A terribly inefficient sort algorithm that generates each permutation of the items until the items are in order.

Generalization (I am a kind of ...)
sort algorithm.

See also bogosort, bozo sort, taco sort.

Note: Expected run time is Θ(n!).

Author: PEB

More information

Timothy J. Rolfe, Perverse and Foolish Oft I Strayed, SIGCSE Bulletin, 40(2):52-55, June 2008.

Historical Note
Rolfe says this algorithm "... has been part of computing culture for a long time. A web search on the key “permutation sort” pulls up 396 references, some prior to 2001."

Go to the Dictionary of Algorithms and Data Structures home page.

If you have suggestions, corrections, or comments, please get in touch with Paul Black.

Entry modified 8 March 2021.
HTML page formatted Mon Mar 8 11:29:19 2021.

Cite this as:
Paul E. Black, "permutation sort", in Dictionary of Algorithms and Data Structures [online], Paul E. Black, ed. 8 March 2021. (accessed TODAY) Available from: