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Stack Operations in Data Structure

What is a Stack?

The Last-In-First-Out (LIFO) concept is used by Stacks, a type of linear data structure. The Queue has two endpoints, but the Stack only has one (front and rear). It only has one pointer, top pointer, which points to the stack's topmost member. When an element is added to the stack, it is always added to the top, and it can only be removed from the stack. To put it another way, a stack is a container that allows insertion and deletion from the end known as the stack's top.

LIFO (Last in First out) Method

According to this method, the piece that was added last will appear first. As an actual illustration, consider a stack of dishes stacked on top of one another. We may claim that the plate we put last comes out first because the plate we put last is on top and we take the plate at the top.

Due to the possibility of understating inventory value, LIFO is not a reliable indicator of ending inventory value. Due to increasing COGS, LIFO leads to reduced net income (and taxes). However, under LIFO during inflation, there are fewer inventory write-downs. Results from average cost are in the middle of FIFO and LIFO.

Real Life Example of LIFO

Let's say that business A sells 10 widgets. $100 per, the first five widgets were delivered two days ago. The remaining five widgets, which cost $200 apiece, just got here yesterday. The last items received are the first to go out on the market, according to the LIFO technique of inventory management. How much may the accountant put down as a cost even though seven widgets were sold?

Although the income from each widget is the same because of its fixed sales price, the cost of each widget is determined by the inventory method used. The last item received is the first item sold according to the LIFO mechanism. Accordingly, the $200 widgets were the first to sell. Following that, the business sold two more of the $100 widgets. Five widgets are priced at $200 each, and two are priced at $100, for a total cost of $1,200 for the widgets using the LIFO approach. As opposed to FIFO, which sells the $200 widgets last, the $100 widgets are sold first. As a result, the price of the sold widgets, which breaks down to five at $100 and two at $200, will be reported as $900. That's why LIFO generates bigger profits during price-increasing periods.

Because of this, LIFO increases expenses during times of price growth and decreases net revenue, which also lowers taxable income. Similar to this, LIFO reduces expenses and raises net income during periods of declining prices, which also raises taxable revenue.

Operations on Stack

Certain actions are made available to us so that we can manipulate a stack.

  • push() to insert an element into the stack
  • pop() to remove an element from the stack
  • top() Returns the top element of the stack.
  • isEmpty() returns true if stack is empty else false.
  • size() returns the size of stack.
Stack Operations in Data Structure


It stacks up a new item. A stack overflow circumstance is when the stack is completely full.

Algorithm for push():


It takes something out of the stack. In the opposite sequence from which they were pushed, the things are popped. The condition is referred to as an underflow if the stack is empty.

Algorithm for pop():


It returns the stack's top element.

Stack Operations in Data Structure

Algorithm for top():


The answer is true if the stack is empty and false otherwise.

Algorithm for isempty():

Practical knowledge about stack

There are several instances of stacks in everyday life. Take the straightforward illustration of dishes stacked on top of one another in a canteen. The plate that is placed at the bottom of the stack stays there for the greatest amount of time since the plate at the top is the first to be taken out. Therefore, it is clear that it adheres to the LIFO/FILO order.

Analysis of Complexity

Various Stack Types

  • Register Stack: The memory unit also has a form of stack called a register that can only handle a tiny amount of data. Because the capacity of the register stack is so little in comparison to the memory, its height is constantly constrained.
  • Memory Stack: This kind of stack is capable of managing a lot of data from memory. The memory stack can be any height because it uses a lot of memory space.

Some Stack Applications

  • Conversion from Infix to Postfix or Prefix
  • There are redo-undo options in numerous locations, including editors like Photoshop.
  • Web browsers have forward and backward functions.
  • Utilized in a wide variety of algorithms, including the Tower of Hanoi, tree traversals, stock span issues, and histogram problems.
  • One of the strategies for constructing algorithms is backtracking. The Knight-Tour issue, N-Queen dilemma, finding your way through a maze, and games like chess or checkers are a few instances of backtracking. In each of these situations, we plunge into a solution, but if that solution is inefficient, we return to the initial state and choose an alternative path. We need a stack in order to save the prior state in order to return from a current state.
  • Topological Sorting and Strongly Connected Components are two examples of Graph Algorithms
  • Any modern computer employs a stack as its principal memory management system for conducting operations. A computer system running programs each have their own memory allocations.
  • Stack can also be used for string reversal. Each character is added into the stack here one by one. Therefore, the initial character of a string is at the bottom of the stack, and its last element is at the top. The stack's pop operations result in a string that is in reverse order.
  • Computers' implementation of function calls also benefits from stack. The function that was last invoked is always finished first.
  • Stacks are also employed in text editors to implement the undo/redo function.

Implementing a stack may be done in one of two ways

  • Using an array
  • Linking lists

Implementation of Stack using Array:


10 pushed into stack
20 pushed into stack
30 pushed into stack
30 Popped from stack
Top element is : 20
Elements present in stack : 20 10
Process executed in 3.22 seconds
Press any key to continue.

Advantages of Implementation of Stack using Array:

  • Simple to implement
  • Since pointers are not used, memory is conserved.

Disadvantage of Implementation of Stack using Array:

  • It doesn't change size in response to requirements as they arise since it is not dynamic. (However, stacks can also expand and contract with array implementation in the case of dynamically sized arrays like vector in C++, list in Python, and ArrayList in Java.)
  • It is necessary to establish the stack's overall size in advance.

Implementation of Stack using Linked List:


10 pushed to stack
20 pushed to stack
30 pushed to stack
30 popped from stack
Top element is 20
Elements present in stack : 20 10
Process executed in 3.22 seconds
Press any key to continue.

Advantages of Implementation of Stack using Linked List:

  • According to the requirements at runtime, the linked list implementation of a stack can expand and contract.
  • Many virtual machines, including JVM, use it.

Disadvantage of Implementation of Stack using Linked List:

  • Requires more memory since pointers are used.
  • In a stack, random accessing is not feasible.

Implementation of Stack using Singly Linked List

All single linked list activities should be carried out according to stack operations LIFO (last in first out), and with the aid of that understanding, we are going to create a stack using a singly linked list.


  • Get a node started
  • Update the node's value by adding data, as in node->data = data.
  • Now update the top pointer to the current node and connect this node to the top of the linked list.


  • Check first to see whether there are any nodes in the connected list; if not, return
  • If not, create a temporary reference to the top node and advance it by one step before releasing the temporary node.


  • Verify whether any nodes are present, and if not, return.
  • Return the value of the linked list's top node if not.


  • Initialize a temporary node with the top pointer.
  • now begin navigating temp till NULL is encountered.
  • Print the value of the temporary node simultaneously.



Stack Size : 4
Top Element : 4
Stack as linked List
Removed  Element : 4
Removed  Element : 3
Removed  Element : 2
Removed  Element : 1
Stack is Empty
Process executed in 4.43 seconds
Press any key to continue

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