Introduction of C Programming

C is a general-purpose programming language that is extremely popular, simple, and flexible to use. It is a structured programming language that is machine-independent and extensively used to write various applications, Operating Systems like Windows, and many other complex programs like Oracle database, Git, Python interpreter, and more.

It is said that ‘C’ is a god’s programming language. One can say, C is a base for the programming. If you know ‘C,’ you can easily grasp the knowledge of the other programming languages that uses the concept of ‘C’

It is the base to learn problem-solving and programming as it involves developing a logistical approach to solving the most basic problems you have encountered in your mathematics textbook in elementary school or day to day real-life situations which require a specific algorithm to be solved.

What is C Programming Language?

C is a procedural programming language as well as a general-purpose programming language that was developed by Dennis Ritchie at AT&T’s Bell laboratories in 1972. It is an amazing and simple language that helps you develop complex software applications with ease. It is considered as the mother of all languages. C is a high-level programming language that provides support to a low-level programming language as well.

History of C Programming

After the introduction of the C language, previously developed programming languages like ALGOL, COBOL, B soon lost its significance and drastically shook their well-established niche in the domain of programming.

C was developed by Dennis Ritchie in 1972. Ritchie aimed at improving B language as it was considered slow and lacked features such as byte addressability. The development of C language was followed by the origin of Unix, the first operating system implemented in a high-level language.

In 1978, Ritchie and Kernighan published the first edition of the book “The C programming language” referred to as the K&R C version of the C language. The second and improved version of the book was published by ANSI (American National Standard Institute) C standard in 1989. C grew into new and improved versions over the years. The latest version of C language is C18, extending no new features but simply certain technical corrections to anomalies in C11.

Where is C used? Key Applications

  1. ‘C’ language is widely used in embedded systems.
  2. It is used for developing system applications.
  3. It is widely used for developing desktop applications.
  4. Most of the applications by Adobe are developed using ‘C’ programming language.
  5. It is used for developing browsers and their extensions. Google’s Chromium is built using ‘C’ programming language.
  6. It is used to develop databases. MySQL is the most popular database software which is built using ‘C’.
  7. It is used in developing an operating system. Operating systems such as Apple’s OS X, Microsoft’s Windows, and Symbian are developed using ‘C’ language. It is used for developing desktop as well as mobile phone’s operating system.
  8. It is used for compiler production.
  9. It is widely used in IOT applications.

Features of C Programming

There are various features or we can say reasons to learn C programming that make it popular in the technical and well as management industries. The salient features of the C language include:

  1. Simple and efficient

The syntax style is easy to comprehend. We can use C to design applications that were previously designed by assembly language.

  1. Memory Management

It allows you to allocate memory at the runtime, that is, it supports the concept of dynamic memory allocation.

  1. Dynamic Memory Allocation

When you are not sure about the memory requirements in your program and want to specify it at the run time, that is, when you run your program, you can do it manually.

  1. Pointers

C language provides a pointer that stores the memory address as its value. Pointers are useful in storing and accessing data from memory. We will study this in detail in our upcoming tutorials.

  1. Case Sensitive

It is pretty clear that lowercase and uppercase characters are treated differently in C. It means that if you write “program” and “Program”, both of them would connote different meanings in C. The ‘p’ in “program” is in lowercase format whereas, the ‘P’ in Program is in uppercase format.

  1. Compiler Based

C is a compiler based language, that is, to execute a code we first need to compile it.

  1. Structure Oriented/Modular

C is a structured programming language. This means you can divide your code and task within a function to make it interactive. These functions also help in code reusability.