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Connected and Disconnected Graph: A graph is connected if any two vertices of the graph are connected by a path and a graph is disconnected if at least two vertices of the graph are not connected by a path. If a graph G is unconnected, then every maximal connected subgraph of G is called a connected component of the graph G.

Dense graph is a graph in which the number of edges is close to the maximal number of edges. Description: Connected graphDescription:  Unconnected graph

Sparse graph is a graph in which the number of edges is close to the minimal number of edges. Sparse graph can be a disconnected graph.

  • Informally, a graph with relatively few edges is sparse, and a graph with many edges is dense.
  • Sparse graphs are sparsely connected (eg: Trees). Usually the number of edges is in O(n) where n is the number of vertices. Therefore adjacency lists are preferred since they require constant space for every edge.
  • Dense graphs are densely connected. Here number of edges is usually O(n^2). Therefore adjacency matrix is preferred.
  • To give a comparison, let us assume graph has 1000 vertices. Irrespective of whether the graph is dense or sparse, adjacency matrix requires 1000^2 = 1,000,000 values to be stored.
  • If the graph is minimally connected (i.E. It is a tree), the adjacency list requires storing 2,997 values. If the graph is fully connected it requires storing 3,000,000 values.1


                     Storage     Add Vertex Add Edge   Remove Vertex Remove Edge Query
Adjacency list O(|V|+|E|)     O(1)            O(1)         O(|V| + |E|)         O(|E|)         O(|V|)
Adjacency matrix O(|V|^2)  O(|V|^2)      O(1)        O(|V|^2)              O(1)           O(1)

Tree: A connected acyclic graph is called a tree. In other words, a connected graph with no cycles is called a tree. Image

  • The edges of a tree are known as branches. Elements of trees are called their nodes. The nodes without child nodes are called leaf nodes.

  • A tree with ‘n’ vertices has ‘n-1’ edges. If it has one more edge extra than ‘n-1’, then the extra edge should obviously has to pair up with two vertices which leads to form a cycle. Then, it becomes a cyclic graph which is a violation for the tree graph.

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