This Demonstration compares four different sorting algorithms: insertion sort, bubble sort, heap sort, and shell sort. They are applied to sorting a random permutation of the first 70 integers. The bubble and heap sort show every single swap made, and the shell sort shows the result of every successive bubble sort. The insertion sort shows the result of every pass (above the level of individual swaps).
Snapshot 1: the insertion sort halfway through, showing the sorted section and unsorted section of the list
Snapshot 2: the bubble sort halfway through, showing the characteristic sorting of large elements and the near-sorting of low elements
Snapshot 3: the heap sort halfway through, showing the sorted higher elements and the even spreading of lower elements due to the heap structure
Snapshot 4: the shell sort after the fourth pass, showing that every element has made it to near where it needs to be
Wolfram Demonstrations Project
Published: July 16 2012