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pandoc uses nub #1022
It takes me about 3 minutes to compile your library and the required dependencies on my system. And the time saving is around 1ms (assuming 10 parameters according to your benchmark) per call. So I need to call pandoc 180000 times (without recompiling it) to make any earnings from your suggestion. NOT including the time to change the code, recompile, test, ...
From a theoretical perspective it makes sense to always use a log(n)*n instead n^2 - but definitely not in this practical use case.
I think pandoc has has more important thinks to do