Definition: (1) The situation or input that forces an algorithm or data structure to take the most time or resources. (2) Having to do with this situation or input.
See also best case, average case, worst-case cost, worst-case execution time, amortized cost, complexity, randomized algorithm, worst-case minimum access, adversary.
Note: See the notes on worst-case behavior at Huffman coding and balanced quicksort and the link at BB(α) tree.
If you have suggestions, corrections, or comments, please get in touch with Paul Black.
Entry modified 12 August 2014.
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Cite this as:
Paul E. Black, "worst case", in Dictionary of Algorithms and Data Structures [online], Paul E. Black, ed. 12 August 2014. (accessed TODAY) Available from: https://www.nist.gov/dads/HTML/worstcase.html