Recursive Function

A recursive function is a function that calls itself during its execution. The process may repeat several times, outputting the result and the end of each iteration.

The function Count() below uses recursion to count from any number between 1 and 9, to the number 10. For example, Count(1) would return 2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10. Count(7) would return 8,9,10. The result could be used as a roundabout way to subtract the number from 10.

function Count (integer N)
    if (N <= 0) return "Must be a Positive Integer";
    if (N > 9) return "Counting Completed";
    else return Count (N+1);
end function

Recursive functions allow programmers to write efficient programs using a minimal amount of code. The downside is that they can cause infinite loops and other unexpected results if not written properly. For example, in the example above, the function is terminated if the number is 0 or less or greater than 9. If proper cases are not included in a recursive function to stop the execution, it will repeat forever, causing the program to crash or become unresponsive.

Updated September 21, 2020

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