University of California San Francisco
Breadth-First Search (BFS) is a fundamental graph primitive frequently used as a building block for many complex graph algorithms. In the worst case, the complexity of BFS is linear in the number of edges and vertices, and the conventional top-down approach always takes as much time as the worst case. A recently discovered bottom-up approach manages to cut down the complexity all the way to the number of vertices in the best case, which is typically at least an order of magnitude less than the number of edges. The bottom-up approach is not always advantageous, so it is combined with the top-down approach to make the direction-optimizing algorithm which adaptively switches from top-down to bottom-up as the frontier expands.