Hashing in C Language

Question. What is meant by hashing in C language?


Hashing is the transformation of a string of characters into a usually shorter fixed-length value or key that represents the original string. Hashing is used to index and retrieve items in a database because it is faster to find the item using the shorter hashed key than to find it using the original value. It is also used in many encryption algorithms.

Here are some of the common hash functions that are used in C programming:

Digit rearrangement: This is simply taking part of the original value or key such as digits in positions 3 through 6, reversing their order, and then using that sequence of digits as the hash value or key.

The division-remainder method: The size of the number of items in the table is estimated. That number is then used as a divisor into each original value or key to extract a quotient and a remainder. The remainder is the hashed value. (Since this method is liable to produce a number of collisions, any search mechanism would have to be able to recognize a collision and offer an alternate search mechanism.)

Radix transformation: Where the value or key is digital, the number base (or radix) can be changed resulting in a different sequence of digits. (For example, a decimal numbered key could be transformed into a hexadecimal numbered key.) High-order digits could be discarded to fit a hash value of uniform length.

Folding: This method divides the original value (digits in this case) into several parts, adds the parts together, and then uses the last four digits (or some other arbitrary number of digits that will work ) as the hashed value or key.

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