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theTavis
12-15-2010, 03:08 AM
Hi,
I am trying to optimize a function using qsort to sort a very large array of Point3 world coordinates. I found it was faster to precompute the values and store them in a parallel array with a for-collect loop. My question is: using qsort, how do I reference these values to sort the Point3 array directly? My current work-around requires two additional for-collect loops as in this example:
valueArr = #() -- declare here so it can be seen by functions
fn sortFn a b = if valueArr[a] > valueArr[b] then 1 else -1
fn sortPoints pointArr =
(
indexArr = for i = 1 to pointArr.count collect i -- collect the indices, these are what we sort
valueArr = for p in pointArr collect (cos p.x + sin p.y) -- compute a value to sort by
qsort indexArr sortFn -- sort the indices
for i = 1 to pointArr.count collect pointArr[indexArr[i]] -- return the points sorted by index
)
This works fine, but for large point counts it would be faster without the first and last for-collect loops. Is it possible to do something like this:
valueArr = #() -- declare here so it can be seen by functions
-- here's the part I don't know how to do: getting the index of a or b
fn sortFn a b = if valueArr[(index of a)] > valueArr[(index of b)] then 1 else -1
fn sortPoints pointArr =
(
valueArr = for p in pArr collect (cos p.x + sin p.y) -- compute some value to sort by
qsort pointArr sortFn -- sort the actual point array
)
any help is appreciated. Thanks!

Klunk
12-15-2010, 09:22 AM
the sort will be faster as it only has to swap integer values and not point3 values, I guessing about 3 times faster. If you need to actually sort the array then at some stage you are always going to have to do the point3 "swaps". You can always access the point3 array via the index array though e.g. verts[indices[i]] not very neat and probably quite slow.

denisT
12-15-2010, 04:38 PM
I think the fastest way to sort this kind of data will be:

-- make a buffer, for example:
seed 0
data = for k=1 to 100000 collect
(
d = random [-180,-180] [180,180]
cs = (cos d.x) + (sin d.y)
#(d, cs)
)
-- sort by sincos
fn sortByN2 a b = if a[2] < b[2] then -1 else if a[2] > b[2] then 1 else 0
qsort data sortByN2
final = for d in data collect d[1]

theTavis
12-16-2010, 12:15 AM
thanks DenisT! Pairing the sort value along with the world coordinates is a great solution, it saves me from having an extra array floating around outside the functions, and let's me eliminate one of the for-collect loops. My code is cleaner now, and a touch faster too. Thanks again!

denisT
12-16-2010, 01:11 AM
... it saves me from having an extra array floating around outside the functions...
probably some of maxscript coders don't know that is possible to pass extra parameters to qsort function. like:

fn sortbybuffer a b buffer: = if buffer[a] < buffer[b] then -1 else if buffer[a] > buffer[b] then 1 else 0
qsort data sortbybuffer buffer:other_array

or:

fn power a b = pow a b
fn sortwithfunction a b fun: =
(
d1 = fun a b
d2 = fun b a
if d1 < d2 then -1 else if d1 > d2 then 1 else 0
)
qsort data sortwithfunction fun:power


PS. the last sample is just a sample. It's not a good idea to use any calculation inside qsort loop. The warranty of any fast sorting is the data prepared in advance .

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