A Deque Implementation

In practice, the most straightforward way to utilize a deque in Python will be to import deque from the collections module. For illustration purposes however, below we present a possible implementation of a deque using a Python list as the underlying concrete data type.

class Deque(object):
    def __init__(self):
        self.__items = []

    def is_empty(self):
        return self.__items == []

    def add_front(self, item):
        self.__items.append(item)

    def add_rear(self, item):
        self.__items.insert(0,item)

    def remove_front(self):
        return self.__items.pop()

    def remove_rear(self):
        return self.__items.pop(0)

    def size(self):
        return len(self.__items)

In remove_front we use the pop method to remove the last element from the list. However, in remove_rear, the pop(0) method must remove the first element of the list. Likewise, we need to use the insert method in add_rear since the append method assumes the addition of a new element to the end of the list.

You can see many similarities to Python code already described for stacks and queues. You are also likely to observe that in this implementation adding and removing items from the front is O(1)O(1) whereas adding and removing from the rear is O(n)O(n). This is to be expected given the common operations that appear for adding and removing items. Again, the important thing is to be certain that we know where the front and rear are assigned in the implementation.

Practical Algorithms and Data Structures

Introduction