Starting with C

C is a powerful language for general-purpose use. It is used worldwide to develop system application programs. It is fast, portable and available in all platforms.  As a beginner, C is a good option to be learned as 1st computer programming. C programs are very much portable. It’ s program which works on one system works on any other operating system without making any changes.

History of C

C is closely associated with UNIX. It was 1st made usable on UNIX systems by Dennis Ritchie and Stephen C. Johnson. The PDP – 11, UNIX version was written in assembly language by Ritchie & Johnson. But as assembly languages are low level machine languages specific to a machine, it was tough to make it generic. So they tried developing B language. However B could not inculcate certain features of PDP -11, hence C evolved.

Features of C

C became a widely used program because of the following features:

  • It is a structured language
  • Results in efficient programs
  • Close to machine / system level programming
  • Platform agnostic for compilation
  • Makes it easy to use and adapt

Major applications of C

It is a very common language and is the backbone of various application / system level programming like Windows, Python, Git and many more. The common uses of C are found in developing:

  • Operating Systems
  • Language Compilers
  • Databases
  • Text Editors
  • Hardware specific softwares like drivers

First C Program Example


void main()
/* first C program */
(“Hello, World!\n”);

We will discuss this in the next chapter.

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