Introduction to C Programming

Introduction to C Programming

C is a high-level structured oriented programming language, used in general-purpose programming, developed by Dennis Ritchie at AT&T Bell Labs, the USA between 1969 and 1973.

C Language History

  • The C programming language is a structure-oriented programming language, developed at AT&T Bell Laboratories in 1972 by Dennis Ritchie
  • C programming language features were derived from an earlier language called “B” (Basic Combined Programming Language – BCPL)
  • C language was invented for implementing UNIX operating system
  • In 1978, Dennis Ritchie and Brian Kernighan published the first edition “The C Programming Language” and commonly known as K&R C
  • In 1983, the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) established a committee to provide a modern, comprehensive definition of C. The resulting definition, the ANSI standard, or “ANSI C”, was completed late 1988.

Features Of C Programming

C language is one of the powerful languages. Below are some of the features of the C language.

  • Reliability
  • Portability
  • Flexibility
  • Interactivity
  • Modularity
  • Efficiency and Effectiveness

Uses Of C Programming Language

The C programming language is used for developing system applications that form a major portion of operating systems such as Windows, UNIX, and Linux. Below are some examples of C being used.

  • Database systems
  • Graphics packages
  • Word processors
  • Spreadsheets
  • Operating system development
  • Compilers and Assemblers
  • Network drivers
  • Interpreters

Structure-oriented Language

  • In this type of language, large programs are divided into small programs called functions
  • The prime focus is on functions and procedures that operate on the data
  • Data moves freely around the systems from one function to another
  • Program structure follows “Top-Down Approach”
  • Examples: C, Pascal, ALGOL, and Modula-2

Object-oriented Language

  • In this type of language, programs are divided into objects
  • The prime focus is in the data that is being operated and not on the functions or procedures
  • Data is hidden and cannot be accessed by external functions
  • Program structure follows “Bottom UP Approach”
  • Examples: C++, Java and C# (C sharp)

Non-structure Oriented Language

  • There is no specific structure for programming this language. Examples: BASIC, COBOL, FORTRAN

Points To Remember

  • The C language is a structure-oriented programming language developed by Dennis Ritchie.
  • The C language is belonging to a middle-level programming language.
  • Operating system programs such as Windows, Unix, Linux are written in C language.
  • C89/C90 and C99 are two standardized editions of C language.
  • C has been written in assembly language.


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