# Leetcode 4 Median of Two Sorted Arrays

Assume that the number of elements in A and B are both larger than k/2, and if we compare the k/2-th smallest element in A(i.e. A[k/2-1]) and the k-th smallest element in B(i.e. B[k/2 - 1]), there are three results:
(Becasue k can be odd or even number, so we assume k is even number here for simplicy. The following is also true when k is an odd number.)
A[k/2-1] = B[k/2-1]
A[k/2-1] > B[k/2-1]
A[k/2-1] < B[k/2-1]
if A[k/2-1] < B[k/2-1], that means all the elements from A to A[k/2-1](i.e. the k/2 smallest elements in A) are in the range of k smallest elements in the union of A and B. Or, in the other word, A[k/2 - 1] can never be larger than the k-th smalleset element in the union of A and B.

Why?
We can use a proof by contradiction. Since A[k/2 - 1] is larger than the k-th smallest element in the union of A and B, then we assume it is the (k+1)-th smallest one. Since it is smaller than B[k/2 - 1], then B[k/2 - 1] should be at least the (k+2)-th smallest one. So there are at most (k/2-1) elements smaller than A[k/2-1] in A, and at most (k/2 - 1) elements smaller than A[k/2-1] in B.So the total number is k/2+k/2-2, which, no matter when k is odd or even, is surly smaller than k(since A[k/2-1] is the (k+1)-th smallest element). So A[k/2-1] can never larger than the k-th smallest element in the union of A and B if A[k/2-1]<B[k/2-1];
Since there is such an important conclusion, we can safely drop the first k/2 element in A, which are definitaly smaller than k-th element in the union of A and B. This is also true for the A[k/2-1] > B[k/2-1] condition, which we should drop the elements in B.
When A[k/2-1] = B[k/2-1], then we have found the k-th smallest element, that is the equal element, we can call it m. There are each (k/2-1) numbers smaller than m in A and B, so m must be the k-th smallest number. So we can call a function recursively, when A[k/2-1] < B[k/2-1], we drop the elements in A, else we drop the elements in B.

We should also consider the edge case, that is, when should we stop?
1. When A or B is empty, we return B[k-1]( or A[k-1]), respectively;
2. When k is 1(when A and B are both not empty), we return the smaller one of A and B
3. When A[k/2-1] = B[k/2-1], we should return one of them

In the code, we check if m is larger than n to garentee that the we always know the smaller array, for coding simplicy.

double findKth(int a[], int m, int b[], int n, int k)
{
//always assume that m is equal or smaller than n
if (m > n)
return findKth(b, n, a, m, k);
if (m == 0)
return b[k - 1];
if (k == 1)
return min(a, b);
//divide k into two parts
int pa = min(k / 2, m), pb = k - pa;
if (a[pa - 1] < b[pb - 1])
return findKth(a + pa, m - pa, b, n, k - pa);
else if (a[pa - 1] > b[pb - 1])
return findKth(a, m, b + pb, n - pb, k - pb);
else
return a[pa - 1];
}

class Solution
{
public:
double findMedianSortedArrays(int A[], int m, int B[], int n)
{
int total = m + n;
if (total & 0x1)
return findKth(A, m, B, n, total / 2 + 1);
else
return (findKth(A, m, B, n, total / 2)
+ findKth(A, m, B, n, total / 2 + 1)) / 2;
}
};

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