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The Standard Template Library (STL) in C++ is a powerful software library that’s a set of C++ template classes. It provides built-in algorithms, functions, iterators, and containers. This article focuses on the C++ STL container stack.
STL containers are objects that can store multiple elements, manage any storage required for the elements, and offer member functions we can use to access them. A container may allow elements of either the same type or different types to be stored in it. Depending on this, and on whether it is unordered, the containers are divided into three types:
There are also Container Adapters: queue, priority_queue, and stack that are a subset of containers. These container adapters offer a different interface for sequential containers.
To help you harness the power of STL and be a more efficient developer, we’re doing a series on C++ STL container fundamentals. This article focuses on the C++ STL container stack (check out the learn page for more).
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In this article, we’ll cover:
In C++ STL, stack is a container adapter that works with the LIFO (last in first out) arrangement — we add elements at the top and delete them from the top. An encapsulated object of vector or deque or list serves as a stack’s underlying container. Like other containers, stack provides a specific set of member functions to access its elements.
Stacks are used widely for problems involving:
Here are the several methods associated with stack in STL:
Let us now see what some of the most commonly used stack methods do and how to use them in the next section via an example.
Here, we take a look at how you can use a stack as a C++ STL container for a smoother coding experience:
Check out the learn page for more.
Q1. What is a stack in C++ STL?
Stack in C++ STL is a LIFO (last-in-first-out) container adapter that uses an encapsulated vector/deque/list object as its underlying container. In a stack, we both add and delete elements only from the top of the stack.
Q2. What are stacks in C++ used for?
Stacks are used widely in expression evaluation and parentheses matching, browsers, text editors: undo/redo, memory management, phones, books, clothes, bangles, plates, and temporary storage of information.
Q3. What functions are associated with stack in C++ STL?
Empty, size, top, pop, and push are some functions associated with a stack in C++ STL.
Q4. What type of data structure container is a stack in C++ STL?
Stack in C++ STL provides a LIFO or Last In First Out type of container data structure,
Q5. What is an overflow and underflow condition in a stack?
An overflow condition occurs when you’re trying to push an element, but the stack is full. An underflow condition occurs when you’re trying to pop an element, but the stack is empty.
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