Changing the greater than sign to a less than sign would change the task of the entire algorithm. It would output the smallest element instead of the largest one. Making sure that we have the right relational operation in place is crucial for achieving the desired result. Changing the operator in a conditional primitive could change the whole "job" of the algorithm. Changing it in an iterative one could lead to a different number of iterations, no iterations at all, or infinite iterations.
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