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Applications, Advantages and Disadvantages of Tree

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  • Last Updated : 13 Jun, 2022

Tree is a non-linear data structure. It consists of nodes and edges. A tree represents data in a hierarchical organization. It is a special type of connected graph without any cycle or circuit.

Tree Terminologies:

  • Node: Node is the main component of a tree that stores the data along with the links to other nodes.
  • Edge: Edge( also called branch) connects two nodes of a tree. A node can have more than one edge.
  • Parent: Parent node is a predecessor to any other node. In simple words, it is a node in the tree that has branches to other nodes.
  • Child: The node which is connected below to another node is called a child of that node. All nodes except the root node are child nodes.
  • Root: The first node of the tree which originates it is called the root of the tree. A tree can have only one root.  
  • Leaf node(External node): Nodes with no child are called leaf nodes or external nodes.
  • Internal node(Non-Leaf node): Nodes with at least one child is called an internal node or non-leaf nodes.  
  • Siblings: Nodes having the same parent are called siblings.
  • Cousins: The nodes belonging to the same level with different parent nodes.
  • Degree: Degree of a node is defined as the number of children of that node. The degree of the tree is the highest degree of a node among all the nodes.
  • Path: The nodes in the tree has to be reachable from other nodes through a unique sequence of edges called path. The number of edges in a path is called the length of the path.
  • Level of a node: The level of a node is defined as the number of edges in the unique path between the root and the node.
  • Subtree: A tree formed by a node and all of its descendants in the tree is called a subtree.


Applications of Tree:

  • Trees can be used to store data which are in hierarchical form.
  • Different types of trees are used in various fields like in databases, computer graphics, computer networks.
  • Tree data structure are used by operating system to manage file directory.

Real-Time Applications of Tree :

  • Databases use tree data structure for indexing.
  • Tree data structure is used in file directory management.
  • DNS uses tree data structure.
  • Trees are used in several games like moves in chess.
  • Decision based algorithms in machine learning uses tree algorithms.

Advantages of Tree:

  • Trees provide hierarchical representation for the data.
  • Trees are dynamic in nature so the number of nodes are not limited.
  • Insertion and deletion in a tree can be done in moderate time.

Disadvantages of Tree:

  • Some trees can only be stored using sequential or chained storage.
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