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Well, it just means you actually see the complexity. Normally that is hidden in a strcmp, which is actually O(L) for the Length of the shorter string.

No, the point of radix sort is that you don't have to do comparisons. Radix sort on strings is the same as radix sort on numbers, just with more buckets.

What they mean is that a standard comparative sort can also become very long if the strings are long, because strong compare can take up to the length of the string to return a result

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