# Decoded String at Index : Array + math

Medium — Leetcode: https://leetcode.com/problems/decoded-string-at-index/solution/

An encoded string is given. To find and write the decoded string to a tape, the encoded string is read one character at a time and the following steps are taken:

• If the character read is a letter, that letter is written onto the tape.
• If the character read is a digit (say ), the entire current tape is repeatedly written more times in total.

Now for some encoded string , and an index , find and return the -th letter (1 indexed) in the decoded string.

Example 1:

`Input: S = "leet2code3", K = 10Output: "o"Explanation: The decoded string is "leetleetcodeleetleetcodeleetleetcode".The 10th letter in the string is "o".`

Example 2:

`Input: S = "ha22", K = 5Output: "h"Explanation: The decoded string is "hahahaha".  The 5th letter is "h".`

Example 3:

`Input: S = "a2345678999999999999999", K = 1Output: "a"Explanation: The decoded string is "a" repeated 8301530446056247680 times.  The 1st letter is "a".`

Constraints:

• will only contain lowercase letters and digits through .
• starts with a letter.
• It’s guaranteed that is less than or equal to the length of the decoded string.
• The decoded string is guaranteed to have less than letters.

Solution

# Intuition :Work Backwards

We dont actually need to constuct the whole string to be able to do this better. ALl we need is that index of the character to get the value from the original string itself.

If we have a decoded string like and an index like , the answer is the same if .

Explaination : Here we did apple ( size 5) repeated 6 times resulting in 5*6=30 character long string. But this 30 characters are 6 times the same original string Apple. The index of “l” in apple is 4. And the index of “l” in apple repeated 6 times are [4, 5 * 1 +4 = 9, 5*2 +4 = 14, 5*3 +4 = 19, 5 * 4 + 4 = 24 and 5 * 5 +4 = 29] ,

In general, when a decoded string is equal to some word with length repeated some number of times (such as with repeated 6 times), the answer is the same for the index as it is for the index .

We can use this insight by working backwards, keeping track of the size of the decoded string. Whenever the decoded string would equal some repeated times, we can reduce to .

Algorithm

1. First, find the length of the decoded string.
2. After, we’ll work backwards, keeping track of : the length of the decoded string after parsing symbols .
3. If we see a digit , it means the size of the decoded string after parsing will be .
4. If we see a character, it means the size after decoding this character is .

Code:

`class Solution:    def decodeAtIndex(self, S: str, K: int) -> str:        size = 0        # Find size = length of decoded string        for c in S:            if c.isdigit():                size *= int(c)            else:                size += 1        # print(size)        # print(K)        # print("*****")        for c in reversed(S):                        K %= size            # print(K, size)            if K == 0 and c.isalpha():                return cif c.isdigit():                size /= int(c)            else:                size -= 1`

Example

Input:

`"leet2code3"10`

Stdout

`3610**********10 36*****10.0 12.0*****10.0 11.0*****0.0 10.0`

Result

`"o"`

## More from Technical Interviews Preparation

Currently preparing for interviews

## Update On The Fly React Native Apps via Codepush

Get the Medium app