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While linked lists are fundamental, depending on the language(s) people have used and how people were taught they may actually not be something people have used. Anyone using mostly high-level interpreted languages (e.g. Python) or something like PHP may not have ever used them, and if they're somewhat self-taught then they may not have encountered them in their reading.

Hash tables might be a better filter, because IMHO you're a lot more likely to find those in real use these days than linked lists.

Your comment is on the mark. But in that particular question they were asked something like, show a singly linked insertion on a white board using some box-and-arrow notation. They were not asked to write it in C or whatever. They couldn't visually whiteboard the concept at all.

(The job area was embedded development, involving C and C++, so asking for C code related to linked lists would have been fair game!)

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