Introduction to C Programming Language, History, Features and Why Study it

A computer is a general purpose machine that can perform many computational and task but these computer's there really can't do anything on their own. so for this computer to do something one has to give the instructions to it. These instructions which are given to this computer are called as "Program" and the person who is going to write this programs / instructions is called as the "Programmer". And the language in which these instructions are written is called as a programming language.

The C language is one of the programming language which we can use to write the instructions for the computer or C is one of the language which can be used to write the computer programs.

History of C Programming Language.

C was created in 1972 at Bell Laboratories of USA by a team lead by Dennis Ritchie and he called his new language as the C because it was the successor of the existing language at that time called as the B language. This B language was influenced by another language called as BCPL.

Originally this C language was created to write the operating systems and compilers but later because of its simplicity and its features it became one of the popular programming language and even to this day it is one of the popular programming language used.

Special Features about C Programming Language.

#1 Compiled Language

Our computers can only execute the code in the binary format, which is the combination of 0's and 1's.

The code which we write using c which is called source code and it is in English like language.

To convert our code from source code to the binary format, we need a software, and that software is called compiler.And the process of converting the source code to the binary format is called compilation.

Since we are using this compilation process to execute our source code, C is also called as a compiled language.

#2 Structural Programming Language.

The next thing about C is C is a structural programming language. Which means that C allows you to structure your source code using functions and procedures. This allows you to re use your code and also make it easy to track down errors if you have any.

#3 Middle Level Programming Language.

C belongs to the category of middle level programming language. Being a middle level programming language,c combines the best language elements of higher level languages like Cobol or Modula 2 or Ada with the control and flexibility of the assembly level language.

Why Should i Study C language.

As a programmer, the programming language that you choose should offer a lot of benefits to you. It should be the most efficient, a reliable language. It should be a simple language and it should be easy to learn and it should be platform independent. And this c language has all these features.

#1 Easy to learn.

c is really easy to learn. that's why c is suggested for the guys who are interested in learn computer programming.

#2 It will help you to learn other languages effectively.

Learning C++ or Java directly is not an easy task. Its because this C++ or Java uses some object oriented programming approach.

This object oriented programming approach introduces some concepts or the advanced concepts like classes, objects then inheritance then polymorphism and templates and many more. To understand these complex concepts, you should be aware of the basic language elements and for that c is the best place to start.

If you are good in basic language elements, or you know the basic language elements, then you can learn these object oriented languages a lot easier.

#3 Performance.

if you talk about the performance or the speed of execution, no other language can beat c. C's speed of execution is almost close to the assembly level languages. Because of this reason, major parts of the operating systems like Windows or the Linux or the Unix are written in c.

#4 It can handle low-level activities.

Then if you have to closely interact with the hardware without compromising the performance,then c is gonna be your first choice.

Just think that you are coding for a microwave oven, or the washing machine, where the performance is the major factor and you have very less resources are available. At that time you can use this c language to code for that.

Where C is most used?

c is often more used in the projects where you have to closely interact with the hardwares, where program execution speed is critical factor. Some of the projects where c is mainly used are

  • Operating Systems
  • Language Compilers
  • Assemblers
  • Text Editors
  • Network Drivers
  • Modern Programs
  • Databases
  • Language Interpreters
  • Utilities
  • Embedded devices

you can watch this video to know about the c programming language.