I have to keep thousands of strings in memory to be accessed serially in Java. Should I store them in an array or should I use some kind of List ?
Since arrays keep all the data in a contiguous chunk of memory (unlike Lists), would the use of an array to store thousands of strings cause problems ?
Answer: The common consensus is that the performance difference is minor. List interface provides more flexibility.
I suggest that you use a profiler to test which is faster.
My personal opinion is that you should use Lists.
I work on a large codebase and a previous group of developers used arrays everywhere. It made the code very inflexible. After changing large chunks of it to Lists we noticed no difference in speed.