# The max() is not enough

## Intro

A friend posed this question today in a slightly different way - "Can a single [Python] command determine the largest of some integers AND that they aren't equal?".

While we didn't find a way to do this within reasonable definitions of "a single command", I thought it might be a fun problem to golf.

## Challenge

"Return the largest of a list of integers if-and-only-if they are not all equal."

More specifically:

Given a string containing only a comma-separated list of integers:

• If they are all equal, return/output nothing
• Else, return/output the largest

## Rules

• The input must be a string containing only a comma-separated list of integers
• The output must be either nothing (no output of any kind), or else the largest element from the input, represented as it is in the input

Entries may be a full program or just a function, provided you provide some way to test them!

## Assumptions

• Assume input list elements may be more than one digit but no larger than ( 232 − 1 )
• Assume the input list has no more than a million elements
• Assume the input will not include negative values
• Assume the input will never be empty

For the avoidance of doubt, the explanation of the challenge given just after "More specifically" shall supersede the statement of the challenge above it ("Return the largest...").

## Examples

(1) All equal:

Input: 1,1
Output:


(2) Dissimilar:

Input: 1,2
Output: 2


(3) Zero!:

Input: 0,0,0,0,0,0,0,1,0,0
Output: 1


(4) Random:

Input: 7,3,8,4,8,3,9,4,6,1,3,7,5
Output: 9


(5) Larger numbers, larger list:

Input: 627,3894,863,5195,7789,5269,8887,3262,1448,3192
Output: 8887


(6) All equal, larger list:

Input: 7,7,7,7,7,7,7,7,7
Output:


(7) All equal, larger list, larger numbers:

Input: 61976,61976,61976,61976,61976,61976,61976,61976,61976,61976,61976,61976,61976,61976,61976,61976,61976,61976,61976,61976,61976,61976,61976
Output:


(8) Not equal, larger list, larger numbers:

Input: 96185,482754,96185,96185,96185,96185,96185,96185,7,96185,96185,96185,96185,96185,96185,96185,96185,96185,96185,96185,96185,96185,96185,96185,96185,961185,96185,96185,96185
Output: 961185


## Scoring

This is code-golf, so the code with the shortest number of bytes wins!

• Is it OK to throw an error when the list contains all equal values? And can we output a null value (such as None in python) rather than outputting nothing? Also, why must the input be a string rather than a list? And what do you mean by the largest element from the input, represented as it is in the input – James Oct 5 '18 at 21:02
• I'd suggest loosening the input requirements to allow for an array/list of integers, too. Are we guaranteed that the list will contain at least 2 elements? Can we output a consistent, non-numeric value instead of nothing if all integers are equal? – Shaggy Oct 5 '18 at 22:08
• Please add a test case where the maximum occurs more than once, like 7,3,7,2. – nimi Oct 6 '18 at 6:31
• Can we have a test case with only one element? Also, can we include a trailing , in the input? – Jo King Oct 6 '18 at 7:03
• Info: This challenge was sandboxed. /// For OP: Although the sandbox is pretty inactive, (I think) it is only a minor problem. The problem is that some problems with the challenge are not apparent if one only reads the challenge, and can only be discovered when one actually solves it. – user202729 Oct 6 '18 at 11:00

# R, 50 37 bytes

-33 bytes thanks to digEmAll! -13 bytes thanks to rturnbull!

x=scan(se=",");if(any(diff(x)))max(x)


Try it online!

• Input does (currently) HAVE to be a string, unfortunately. – Shaggy Oct 6 '18 at 0:23
• 50 bytes taking a comma separated string – digEmAll Oct 6 '18 at 8:42
• Oops I guess my prior link was wrong! This should be right, combining digEmAll's idea with the one I intended on posting... – Giuseppe Oct 8 '18 at 3:24
• 37 bytes by improving how we test the array for equality. – rturnbull Oct 8 '18 at 6:09

# MathGolf, 5 bytes

è▀s╞╙


Try it online!

## Explanation

è      Read whole input as int array
▀     Get unique elements
s    Sort list
╞   Discard from left of array
╙  Get maximum of list


This works because both the max operator and the discard from left operator don't do anything for empty lists. Well, the max operator removes the list and pushes nothing for empty lists.

It could be 4 bytes if input could be taken as a list.

• Input must be a comma separated string. – Shaggy Oct 6 '18 at 11:11
• @Shaggy I missed that. Right now MathGolf doesn't have a "split on character" operator, so it'll take some work to get it right. I'll see what I can do. – maxb Oct 6 '18 at 11:46

# Perl 6, 26 23 22 bytes

-1 byte thanks to nwellnhof

{.max if .Set>1}o&EVAL


Try it online!

Returns an empty slip if everything is equal.

### Explanation

                o&EVAL  # Eval the string to a list of integers
{              }         # Pass to code block
.max            # Return the max
if .Set>1  # If the list converted to a set has more than one element

• The EVAL trick is neat and you can even save a byte with o&EVAL. – nwellnhof Oct 6 '18 at 12:25
• Wouldn’t if +.Set work? – Ven Mar 3 '19 at 19:16
• @Ven No, we need to check if there is more than one element in the Set. – Jo King Mar 3 '19 at 20:18
• Mh, and bitwise ~ is 2 bytes in Perl 6 :( – Ven Mar 3 '19 at 21:43

# Jelly, 4 bytes

ḟṀE?


A full program accepting the input as a command line argument (unquoted) which prints the required output

(Note that it deals with: empty input like , single item input like 7 and multiple item input like 7,8,7 like the spec seems to currently require.)

Try it online!

### How?

ḟṀE? - Full program: if one argument is present it is evaluated using Python
-                 so 7,8,7 -> [7,8,7], while 7 -> 7
ḟṀE? - Main Link: list or integer OR no argument (in which case an implicit argument of 0)
? - if...
E  - ...condition: all equal? (for any integer E yields 1 since the argument is
-                           treated as a list like [integer])
ḟ    - ...then: filter discard (since it's undefined the right argument is implicitly
-                          equal to the left; both are treated as lists, so this
-                          yields an empty list)
Ṁ   - ...else: maximum (again an integer is treated as a list)
- implicit print (Jelly's representation of an empty list is an empty string
-                 furthermore no newline is printed in either case)


# APL (Dyalog Classic), 6 bytes

⍪⌈/~⌊/


Try it online!

a train computing the maximum (⌈/) without (~) the minium (⌊/) turned into a matrix (⍪)

if the input contains only one distinct element, ⌈/~⌊/ will be empty and ⍪ will return a 0×1 matrix which renders as nothing

otherwise, ⌈/~⌊/ will be a 1-element vector and its ⍪ will be a 1x1 matrix (visually indistinguishable from a scalar) that contains the maximum

max($s)[$s!=$s]  (15 bytes - which might well be the shortest solution in a language that isn't purpose-designed for brevity) NOTE: this doesn't satisfy the requirement "represented as it is in the input" - if there's an integer with leading zeroes or a plus sign in the input, these will be lost. I suspect that's true of many other solutions as well. # K4, 38 35 bytes {$[1=#:t:?:(7h$","\:x)-48;;*:t@>t]}  Test Cases: q)k){$[1=#:t:?:(7h$","\:x)-48;;*:t@>t]}"1,2,4,4" ,4 q)k){$[1=#:t:?:(7h$","\:x)-48;;*:t@>t]}"4,4,4,4" q) q)k){$[1=#:t:?:(7h$","\:x)-48;;*:t@>t]}"7,3,8,4,8,3,9,4,6,1,3,7,5" ,9 q)k){$[1=#:t:?:(7h$","\:x)-48;;*:t@>t]}"7,7,7,7,7,7,7,7,7,7,7,7,7" q)  I'm not very fluent in any of the k variants available on TiO, so no online example available, I'll try to come up with one though Explanation If you're wondering why certain operations are performed before others, K4 does not have operator precedence, it instead interprets from right to left (though you can use parentheses for precedence). Expressions seperated by semicolons. $[expr;True;False] is the conditional format

{$[1=#:t:?:(7h$","\:x)-48;;*:t@>t]}
","\:x                 //split string on commas
7h$//cast strings to long -48 //they'll be from ascii format, so compensate ?: //get distinct list t: //set list to variable t #: //get count of t 1= //check if count t = 1 ;; //return nothing if true t@>t //if false, sort t descending *: //return first value  Can probably be golfed down more, not a fan of having to use that makeshift max function at the end. EDIT: If the commas in output are a problem, it can be fixed with two more bytes: q)k){$[1=#:t:?:(7h$","\:x)-48;;*:,/t@>t]}"1,2,4,4" 4 ,/ //joins the single element lists into one  Taking the total to 40 37, but the comma before the number simply means that it's a single element list as opposed to an atom. ## PHP (<=5.6) 64 74 bytes  echo array_count_values($a=split(',',$argn))[$m=max($a)]==count($a)?'':$m;  Run as pipe with -nR or test it online split was removed in PHP7, but as I had to add 10 to fix a few issues, it was worth using instead of explode which is roughly equivalent in this case. • Also this doesn't work when there are more than one element with the max value I missread the If they are all equal, return/output nothing to be If they are equal, return/output nothing meaning if there are more then one to output empty. Adding ==count($a) fixes it. Because array_count_values counts the number of times it appears in the array, if that equals the total amount of elements in the array then output '' otherwise output the max – ArtisticPhoenix Oct 7 '18 at 4:51
• @JoKing - You shouldn't be taking input via a pre-declared variable - fixed using $argn it takes it from stdin (this has been used in multiple golf answers) I can give examples of not only mine but other users. – ArtisticPhoenix Oct 7 '18 at 4:57 # Japt-hF, 8 bytes q, ün Åc  Try it -3 bytes if the input could be taken as an array. # 05AB1E, 9 8 bytes ',¡ZsËiõ  -1 byte thanks to @Cowabunghole. Explanation: ',¡ '# Split the (implicit) input by "," Z # Push the maximum (without popping the list) s # Swap so the list is at the top of the stack again Ëi # If all elements are equal: õ # Push an empty string "" # (Implicitly output the top of the stack to STDOUT as result)  • Pretty similar solution, but you can avoid the else by doing ',¡ZsËiõ, saving 1 byte – Cowabunghole Oct 12 '18 at 14:24 • @Cowabunghole Smart, thanks! – Kevin Cruijssen Oct 12 '18 at 17:04 # Python 2, 44 bytes k=eval(input()) if~-len(set(k)):print max(k)  Try it online! • I'm guessing eval in Python converts a comma-delimited string to a list? – Shaggy Oct 6 '18 at 0:28 • Yes; more exactly a tuple (immutable list). If the input were not a string (i.e., omit quotes in TIO input section), then one could just use k=input() and get the same result. – Chas Brown Oct 6 '18 at 0:30 # Ohm v2, 9 bytes Ul1E?Oq¿↑  Try it online! Explanation: Ul1E?Oq¿↑ U Uniquify input l Get length 1E Push whether length is equak to 1 ?Oq If so immediately quit ¿↑ Else print maximum  • The input should be a string of comma separated numbers – Jo King Oct 5 '18 at 22:50 # Charcoal, 15 bytes ≔Ｉ⪪Ｓ,θ¿›⌈θ⌊θＩ⌈θ  Try it online! Link is to verbose version of code. Explanation: ≔Ｉ⪪Ｓ,θ  Split the input on commas and cast each value to integer. ¿›⌈θ⌊θ  Test whether the maximum value is greater than the minimum value. Ｉ⌈θ  If so then cast the maximum value to string and print. # Mathematica, 43 bytes If[!Equal@@#,Max@#]&@@#~ImportString~"CSV"&  Pure function. Takes a comma-separated string as input and returns either a number or Null. I believe this is valid, as Null is not graphically displayed: # C (gcc), 91 bytes M(s)char*s;{long m=atol(s),o,l=0;for(;s=strchr(s,44);o<0?m-=o:0)l|=o=m-atol(++s);s=l?m:-1;}  Try it online! ### Degolf M(s)char*s;{ long m=atol(s),o,l=0; // Read the first integer from string for(;s=strchr(s,44); // Advance pointer to next ',' o<0?m-=o:0) // End of loop: if difference <0, deduct from max, increasing it to new max. l|=o=m-atol(++s); // Read next number, and subtract it from current max. // Bitwise-OR the difference into the l-variable s=l?m:-1; // End of function: if l is non-zero, there were at least two different values. // Return -1 if l is zero, otherwise the max value. }  • Suggest M(char*s) instead of M(s)char*s; and index() instead of strchr() – ceilingcat Oct 7 '18 at 17:16 # Pyth, 7 bytes Itl{QeS  As Pyth is based on Python, user input is always interpreted as a string, which then may be passed through eval(). All Pyth programs automatically run Q=eval(input()) as their first instruction. Explanation: Itl{QeS | Full code Itl{QeSQ | with implicit variables filled ---------+------------------------------- I | If t | one less than l | the length of {Q | the deduplicated input | is truthy (!=0), | print e | the last element of SQ | the sorted input  # Java (JDK), 101 bytes d->{long m=0,c=-1,b;for(var s:d.split(",")){b=new Long(s);c=c<0|c==b?b:0;m=b>m?b:m;}return c>0?"":m;}  Try it online! Explained d->{ // Function taking a String input long m=0,c=-1,b; // Initialise variables for(var s:d.split(",")){ // Split by comma and loop over elements b=new Long(s); // Parse String to Long c=c<0 // If c<0 (i.e. this is the first element) |c==b // ...or c is equal to the current element ?b // Set c to the current element (all elements are the same so far :0; // Otherwise set c to zero to denote that list is not all same element m=b>m?b:m; // Set m to max of b and m } return c>0?"" // If c is not zero then all elements are the same, return nothing :m; // Else return max element }  Bonus solution! Despite my best efforts I couldn't get this solution using regex and Streams to less than 105 bytes, but I really liked its elegance so had to give it an honourary mention; d->d.matches("(.+?)(,\\1)+")?"":java.util.Arrays.stream(d.split(",")).map(Long::new).reduce(0L,Long::max)  • 100 bytes by using a combination of your regex (minus the ?) and a regular loop and return (instead of stream). – Kevin Cruijssen Oct 8 '18 at 14:34 # MATL, 15 9 bytes U&=?}1MX>  Just trying to keep my MATL chops from getting too rusty! Edit: rusty after all; saved 6 bytes, thanks to @LuisMendo. ### Explanation U % str2num - automatically parses comma-separated strings &=? % Are all the values equal? } % if not 1M % Get the numeric matrix again on the stack X> % And find its maximum value.  # Pip, 13 bytes a^:',MXaRMMNa  Try it online! Uses the approach from ngn's APL solution:  MNa Minimum of the list aRM Remove it from the list MX Take the max of the remaining elements  The first 5 bytes a^:', split the input string on commas. Alternate 13-byte solutions: I!$=Ya^',PMXy
a^:',\$=a?uMXa
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