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# Python list rotation [duplicate]

Questions:

Possible Duplicate:
Efficient way to shift a list in python

I’d like to rotate a Python list by an arbitrary number of items to the right or left (the latter using a negative argument).

Something like this:

>>> l = [1,2,3,4]
>>> l.rotate(0)
[1,2,3,4]
>>> l.rotate(1)
[4,1,2,3]
>>> l.rotate(-1)
[2,3,4,1]
>>> l.rotate(4)
[1,2,3,4]

How might this be done?

def rotate(l, n):
return l[-n:] + l[:-n]

More conventional direction:

def rotate(l, n):
return l[n:] + l[:n]

Example:

example_list = [1, 2, 3, 4, 5]

rotate(example_list, 2)
# [3, 4, 5, 1, 2]

The arguments to rotate are a list and an integer denoting the shift. The function creates two new lists using slicing and returns the concatenatenation of these lists. The rotate function does not modify the input list.

Questions:

If applicable, you could use collections.deque as a solution:

import collections

d = collections.deque([1,2,3,4,5])
d.rotate(3)

print d
>>> deque([3, 4, 5, 1, 2])

As a bonus, I’d expect it to be faster than in-built list.

Questions:

The following function will rotate the list l, x spaces to the right:

def rotate(l, x):
return l[-x:] + l[:-x]

Note that this will only return the original list if x is outside the range [-len(l), len(l)]. To make it work for all values of x, use:

def rotate(l, x):
return li[-x % len(li):] + li[:-x % len(li)]

Questions:
>>> l=[1,2,3,4]
>>> l[1:]+l[:1]
[2, 3, 4, 1]
>>> l=[1,2,3,4]
>>> l[2:]+l[:2]
[3, 4, 1, 2]
>>> l[-1:]+l[:-1]
[4, 1, 2, 3]

A general rotate n to the left (positive y in the call to rotate) or right (negative y) then:

def rotate(l, y=1):
if len(l) == 0:
return l
y = y % len(l)    # Why? this works for negative y

return l[y:] + l[:y]

If you want the direction of rotation to be the same as your example, just negate y in rotate.

def rotate(l, y=1):
if len(l) == 0:
return l
y = -y % len(l)     # flip rotation direction

return l[y:] + l[:y]