Friday, July 29, 2016

C Basics – Must Know Terms in C

Program - A text file comprising code which can be compiled.

Source file/Code - A text file comprising code which can be compiled.

Syntax - The text of a program: the series of tokens in which it is expressed.

Header/Library File - The file which contains compiled versions of commonly used functions which can be linked to an object file to make an executable program.

Translation Unit - The set of source files seen by the compiler and translated as a unit: generally one .c file, plus all header files mentioned in #include directives.

Object Code - Code which is directly understandable by the machine (machine code).

Executable Program - Program which will run in the environment of the operating system or within an appropriate run time environment.

Function - A function is a self-contained block of statements that perform a coherent task of some kind.

Block - A sequence of definitions, declarations and statements, enclosed within braces {}.

Instruction - Constants, Variables and keywords combined to form instructions. Each instruction in a C program is written as a separate statement.

Statement - C statement consists of tokens, expressions, and other statements. The statements of a C program control the flow of program execution. Each statement must be ended with a semicolon. It indicates the end of one logical entity.

Expression - A sequence of operators and operands which may yield a single value.

Loop: A loop statement allows us to execute a statement or group of statements multiple times.

Token: A C program can also be called as collection of various tokens. The basic element recognized by the compiler is the "token". Token in C includes characters, keywords, constants, identifiers, strings, special symbol, operators, and comments.

Character: A character denotes any alphabet, digit or symbol used to represent information.

Keyword: Keywords are the words whose meaning has already been explained to the C compiler.

Constant: Constants are expressions with a fixed value.

Identifier: A C identifier is a name used to identify a variable, function, or any other user-defined item.

String: Sequence of characters. A string in 'C' is an array of characters terminated by a Null character ('\0').

Special Symbol: Symbols other than the Alphabets and Digits and white-spaces.

Operator: A symbol that represent a specific mathematical or non-mathematical action.

Comment: Comments are like helping text in your C program and they are ignored by the compiler.

Expression: An expression is nothing but a valid combination of constants, variables and operators.

Variable: An entity that may vary during program execution is called a variable.

Type Specifier: A data type or type specifier determines what type of values an object can have and what operations can be performed.

Type Qualifier: In C, a type qualifier is a keyword that is applied to a type, resulting in a qualified type.

Storage Class: Storage class of a variable decides scope, visibility and lifetime of that variable.

Array: Array is a collection of variables of the same type.

Structure: A structure is a convenient tool for handling a group of logically related data items.

Pointer: Pointer is a variable that represents the location of a data item.

Related topics:
Intro of C   |   Overview of C   |   Features of C   |   Applications of C   |   The Setup for C   |   Source Program in C   |   Program Startup and Termination in C   |   Program Structure in C   |   First Program in C

List of topics: C Programming

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