Acta Informatica

, Volume 13, Issue 1, pp 39–52 | Cite as

An algorithmic and complexity analysis of interpolation search

  • Gaston H. Gonnet
  • Lawrence D. Rogers
  • J. Alan George


We begin with a brief survey of the literature concerning the Interpolation Search algorithm, then provide a detailed description of the algorithm and how to implement it to search a particular table or file. We next analyze the complexity of the search method by investigating the moments of the distribution of the number of table accesses needed to locate a given record. For a table containing n entries, we find that the expected value of the number of accesses is log2 log2n+O(1) and that the variance is O(log2 log2n). Lastly we provide some approximations for the expected value for the successful and unsuccessful search in such a table.


Information System Operating System Data Structure Communication Network Information Theory 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1980

Authors and Affiliations

  • Gaston H. Gonnet
    • 1
  • Lawrence D. Rogers
    • 2
  • J. Alan George
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Computer ScienceUniversity of WaterlooWaterlooCanada
  2. 2.Burroughs CorporationSan DiegoUSA

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