Harder Array Loop Practice

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Array Loop Practice asked for the smallest number in an array, but can solve a harder question?


You are given ar, an array of numbers, and need to print the second smallest number in the array. You can modify your solution to Array Loop Practice to find the desired number. Different solutions are possible...


Print the second smallest number in an array.

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  • Its reading my < symbol as a > symbol

  • If anybody needs help, take a look at this solution using the bubble sort algorithm.

  • hmmm cant help it, no idea ..is there easier way than "this solution"?

  • @calo, this problem can be solved much in a much simpler manner. See the hint that I added to the problem.

  • I got there in the end! This is the link to my answer: http://www.learneroo.com/user_answers/0675578220

  • @Victoria, well done! When you learn how to create your own methods, you'll be able to improve it further to avoid code duplication.

  • I think that solutions given on links above are far from perfection, since they change the data of the array

  • @Ksenia, that's OK in this challenge. Another approach would be to just track the 2 smallest numbers in the array as you go through it..

  • If you use the way shown in the Hint, be sure to declare your "secondsmallest" variable AFTER changing the smaller variable to a bigger number. Otherwise inputs 1 and 3 wont work!
    Btw, thanks to @Victoria Holland, I understood the hint trough her example.

  • I get the three numerical outputs green but it still says incorrect ("Your Output" is in red). Is it running some other checks that aren't being announced?

  • @Robin, yes, it often runs on other cases and only shows the overall result for them.

  • I finally got it! Though I feel like I cheated a bit by setting my 2nd-smallest variable to an unreasonably high number to begin with, rather than setting it to a value drawn from the array itself. It's here: http://www.learneroo.com/user_answers/8850767557

  • Setting it to a large number is fine, though you could have also selected a number from the array. Java doesn't have any built-in way to do it, though maybe it could be done a little cleaner.

  • why does not this work?

    int smallest = ar[0];
    int secondSmallest = ar[0];

        for(int i=0; i<ar.length; i++){
            if(ar[i] <= smallest){
  • Here is the solution for the unpatient ones:

    static void doStuff(int[] ar){
    int x = Integer.MAX_VALUE;
    int y = Integer.MAX_VALUE;

    // Loop over the array

  • Took me all day today and i think a little of yesterday to figure this exercise out.

    //your code here
    //Modified the code to comply this exercise with the input provided

  • Here's an example without "cheating" by having to pick an absurdly large number:

  • static void doStuff(int[] ar)
        System.out.println(ar[1]);  //your code here
  • @Dino Šišić : there is a better solution that doesnt require using integer.Max value (using this would make the problem trivial). Also, there must be no repeating value in the array

  •     int smallest = ar[0];
        for(int i = 1; i < ar.length; i++){
            if(ar[i] < smallest){
                smallest = ar[i];
        int second = smallest;
  • it might not be the best solution
    int small = ar[0];
    int large = ar[0];
    int index = 0;
    int repeat = 0;

            for(int i = 0; i < ar.length; i++)
  • static void doStuff(int[] ar){
        //your code here
        int[] small = new int[2];
        small[0] = ar[0];
        small[1] = ar[1];
        if(small[0] > small[1]){
  • Keep the previous code to find the smallest number, and after that code, add the exact same thing over again with a second condition stating that the cell cannot be equal to the smallest number.

  • Can anyone tell me why this won't work?

    static void doStuff(int[] ar){
    int smallest = ar[0];
    for(int i=0; i<ar.length; i=i+1){
  • @corey ar[i]=smallest; will modify the value in the array, is that really what you want to do?

  • Literally tried this for 5 hours without trying to use Google as help, What am i doing wrong here?

    import java.util.*;
    public class Main{
    static void doStuff(int[] ar){

  • @Gaetano, step through your code with the examples that are wrong to spot the error. For example, what happens when your code runs on the first case? Consider changing the smallest numbers so it doesn't cause trouble the second time...

  • It took me a while (from int i = one a clock; i= two o clock; i++) :-) but i think i found it.
    Here is my answer.

    my code

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