So far there is no usage guidance for the tag . According Wikipedia, list may refer to an abstract data type, or a concrete data structure linked-list.

So when should we use the tag ?

I thought it should be used only for the abstract data type meaning because there is already a tag.

  • $\begingroup$ What exactly prompts your question? It seems clear that, yes, lists is to be used on all data structure questions than handle lists, be they linked lists, skip lists, or jump lists. $\endgroup$
    – Raphael
    Jul 12, 2018 at 20:41
  • $\begingroup$ @Raphael Sometimes I tag a question about linked lists, I don't know which one to choose. If I choose both, it seems a bit verbose. $\endgroup$
    – xskxzr
    Jul 13, 2018 at 3:46
  • $\begingroup$ Ah, that's the confusion! $\endgroup$
    – Raphael
    Jul 13, 2018 at 6:47

1 Answer 1


Tl;dr: Both is fine!

We have different levels of tags: some, like , cover entire fields of research; others, like , relate to a very specific thing.

The idea is to always have a little of everything: "big" tags to broadly classify the question, and then as many and as specific tags as you can fit in the limit of five.

For instance, I might tag a question that asks about how to implement queues using linked lists as

If it's more about the algorithm, I might add . If there's an analysis aspect to it, I might instead add , and maybe drop either of / for /. As you see, it's not an exact science: when editing, I try to represent the focus or perspective of the question as well as possible. Questions I might ask are:

  • How relevant is it that the lists are (single-)linked?
  • Is the asker specifically interested in space costs? (The default assumption is runtime, so in that case I'd always add the tag.)
  • Does the asker already have the algorithm and wants it analysed, or are they looking for an algorithm first? (Then, analysis may be better posted as separate question.)
  • If it's about an analysis, is it about the worst case (sadly, the default) or ?

As a general rule of thumb, if I can't decide in which direction to tag, chances are that the question is too broad. If you're asking for queue implementations using both single- and double-linked lists and a comparative analysis of runtime and space in worst and average case -- well, we're looking at a 15-page paper, so that question will have to be split up!


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