Scala algorithm: Pure-functional double linked list


Algorithm goal

Doubly linked lists are quite the interesting thing, because they are by definition mutable.

Implement one pure-functionally.

Test cases in Scala

  NonEmptyDoubleLinkedList.of(1, 2, 3).toList == List(1, 2, 3),
  "We can turn the DLL into a List"
  NonEmptyDoubleLinkedList.of(1, 2, 3).currentItem == 1,
  "After creation, the focus item is the first item"
  NonEmptyDoubleLinkedList.of(1, 2, 3).previous.isEmpty,
  "After creation, there is no previous item"
  NonEmptyDoubleLinkedList.of(1, 2, 3).withoutNext.toList == List(1, 3),
  "We can exclude a next item safely"
  NonEmptyDoubleLinkedList.of(1, 2, 3).last.currentItem == 3,
  "Last item is correctly found"
  NonEmptyDoubleLinkedList.of(1, 2, 3).last.toList == List(1, 2, 3),
  "Last item can reproduce a correct list"
  NonEmptyDoubleLinkedList.of(1, 2, 3).last.insertBefore(9).toList ==
    List(1, 2, 9, 3),
  "We can insert before"
  NonEmptyDoubleLinkedList.of(1, 2, 3).last.insertAfter(9).toList ==
    List(1, 2, 3, 9),
  "We can insert after"
  NonEmptyDoubleLinkedList.of(1, 2, 3).last.insertBeforeAndSeek(9).toList ==
    List(1, 2, 9, 3),
  "We can insert before and seek"
  NonEmptyDoubleLinkedList.of(1, 2, 3).last.insertAfterAndSeek(9).toList ==
    List(1, 2, 3, 9),
  "We can insert after and seek"
  NonEmptyDoubleLinkedList.of(1, 2, 3).last.first.toList == List(1, 2, 3),
  "Going to last, and then first reproduces the order"
  NonEmptyDoubleLinkedList.of(1, 2, 3).last.withoutPrevious.toList ==
    List(1, 3),
  "We can exclude a previous item safely"

Algorithm in Scala

63 lines of Scala (version 2.13).

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Interestingly enough, we can use plain Scala Lists, and construct them at O(1) performance for many of the operations, but not all.

The implementation contains many methods that may come useful. We basically represent the doubly linked list as a list of 'currentItem', 'preceding' and 'following' lists. It works similar to a 'Zipper' structure. (this is © from

Scala concepts & Hints

  1. Drop, Take, dropRight, takeRight

    Scala's `drop` and `take` methods typically remove or select `n` items from a collection.

    assert(List(1, 2, 3).drop(2) == List(3))
    assert(List(1, 2, 3).take(2) == List(1, 2))
    assert(List(1, 2, 3).dropRight(2) == List(1))
    assert(List(1, 2, 3).takeRight(2) == List(2, 3))
    assert((1 to 5).take(2) == (1 to 2))
  2. Option Type

    The 'Option' type is used to describe a computation that either has a result or does not. In Scala, you can 'chain' Option processing, combine with lists and other data structures. For example, you can also turn a pattern-match into a function that return an Option, and vice-versa!

    assert(Option(1).flatMap(x => Option(x + 2)) == Option(3))
    assert(Option(1).flatMap(x => None) == None)
  3. Partial Function

    A Partial Function in Scala is similar to function type `A => Option[B]` (Option Type).

    def getNaming(num: Int): Option[String] =
      PartialFunction.condOpt(num) { case 1 => "One" }
    assert(getNaming(1) == Some("One"))
    assert(getNaming(2) == None)
  4. Pattern Matching

    Pattern matching in Scala lets you quickly identify what you are looking for in a data, and also extract it.

    assert("Hello World".collect {
      case character if Character.isUpperCase(character) => character.toLower
    } == "hw")

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  6. Find combinations adding up to N (unique)
  7. Find k closest elements to a value in a sorted Array
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Explore the 21 most useful Scala concepts

To save you going through various tutorials, we cherry-picked the most useful Scala concepts in a consistent form.

  1. Class Inside Class
  2. Class Inside Def
  3. Collect
  4. Def Inside Def
  5. Drop, Take, dropRight, takeRight
  6. foldLeft and foldRight
  7. For-comprehension
  8. Lazy List
  9. Option Type
  10. Ordering
  11. Partial Function
  12. Pattern Matching
  13. Range
  14. scanLeft and scanRight
  15. Sliding / Sliding Window
  16. Stack Safety
  17. State machine
  18. Tail Recursion
  19. Type Class
  20. View
  21. Zip

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