# Practice Problems: Not understanding the Auxiliary function?

In this practice problem I don’t understand the solution to the part dealing with the auxiliary function. The aim was to create a frequency table of the characters in a string. I have commented on what is confusing me below.

Code:

``````def frequency(string):
freq = {}
for c in string:
if c not in freq:
freq[c] = 0  # Why is this not freq[c] = 1
freq[c] += 1
return freq
frequency('aaabbc') #Why does this not return {a:2 , b: 1, c:0} based on
#line 5 of this block of code.
``````
1 Like

Because in the next line it is going to add by one either way if `condition` is `True` or `False`
here

I think you are confusing given solution with this logic.

``````def frequency(string):
freq = {}
for c in string:
if c not in freq:
freq[c] = 1
else:
freq[c] += 1
return freq
``````
1 Like

So will this code run irrespective of the result of the result of `if c not in freq:`? If so why even include an if-statement?

First time you need to add new `character` in the dictionary if not available in the `dictionary`. else you will get runtime error.

1 Like

So could you use the following code and get the same result?

Yes, You can try it. you will get same results.

1 Like

Thanks so much for your help!

1 Like

Hello
even with the solution provided i am still facing problem. can you help?

``````def character_freq(string):
freq = {}
for c in string:
if c not in freq:
freq[c] = 0
else:
freq[c] += 1
return freq
def are_anagrams(string1, string2):
if len(string1) != len(string2):
return False
freq1 = character_freq(string1)
freq2 = character_freq(string2)
for c in freq1:
if c not in freq2 or freq1[c] != freq2[c]:
return False
return True
print(are_anagrams('gainly', 'laying'))
print(are_anagrams('banana', 'bacana'))
``````

Hi, what problem are you facing?

Hello,
The output is supposed to be:
True
False
And also I got this message from the system when i am trying to submit:
Function `are_anagrams` did not return the expected value.
With this code provided my output is
True
True
So something is wrong
Thank you

Problem seems to indentation (the return statement) in `are_anagrams` function. It should be

``````def are_anagrams(string1, string2):
if len(string1) != len(string2):
return False
freq1 = character_freq(string1)
freq2 = character_freq(string2)
for c in freq1:
if c not in freq2 or freq1[c] != freq2[c]:
return False
return True
``````
1 Like

Perfect! Thank you very much!

1 Like

I have another way of solve, it’s about using set element to check whether if two strings are anagrams of each other
Look at these examples:

``````test1_string1 = 'gainly'
test1_string2 = 'laying'
# Expected output: True
``````
``````test2_string1 = 'banana'
test2_string2 = 'bacana'
# Expected output: False
``````

We can see that whatever kind of re-arrange position element in a string is, if one is an anagram, the element in the string isn’t replaced by any different element, it means that the exists of element in string is the same but only position change

So I use set condition to check that, here is my code:

``````def are_anagrams(string1, string2):
set_1 = set(string1)
set_2 = set(string2)
if set_1 == set_2:
return True
else:
return False
``````

I dunno why, because while we can go with a easier way, did we have any edge case that make this function is error? Because I check with the provided input and the result is OK