Topics
Introduction
Steps to Develop a Program
History of C
Where C Stands
Getting Started with C
Structure of a C program
Execution of C Program
C - Tokens
 

History of C

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HISTORICAL DEVELOPMENT OF C
By 1960 a hoard of computer languages had come into existence almost each for a specific purpose. For example, COBOL was being used for Commercial Applications, FORTRAN for Engineering and Scientific Applications and so on. At this stage people started thinking that instead of learning and using so many languages which can program different purpose, why not use only one language which can program all possible applications. Therefore, an international committee was set up to develop such a language. This committee came out with a language called ALGOL 60. However, ALGOL 60 never really became popular because it seemed too abstract, too general. To bind Programming Language (CPL) was developed at Cambridge University. CPL was an attempt to bring ALGOL 60 down to earth. However, CPL turned out to be so big, having so many features, that it was hard to learn and difficult to implement.
Basic Combined Programming Language (BCPL), developed by Martin Richards at Cambridge University aimed to solve this problem by bringing CPL down to its basic good features. But unfortunately it turned out to be too less powerful and too specific. Around same time a language called B was written by Ken Thompson at AT & T's Bell Labs, as a further simplification of CPL. But like BCPL, B too turned out to be very specific. Ritchie inherited the features of B and BCPL., added some of his own and developed C. Ritchie's main achievement is the restoration of the lost generally in BCPL and B, and still keeping it powerful.
C is a programming language developed at AT & T’s Bell laboratories of USA in 1972. It was designed and written by DENNIS RITCHIE. C has the features of both BASIC and PASCAL. As a middle level language, C allows the manipulation of bits, bytes and addresses the basic elements with which computer functions. C’s code is very portable, in the sense that it is easy to adapt software written for one type of operating system to another type. C has very small keywords. Set includes extensive library functions which enhance the basic functions. 
 
Year
Language
Developed by
Remarks
1960
ALGOL
International Committee
Too General, too Abstract.
1963
CPL
Cambridge University
Hard to Learn, difficult to implement.
1967
BCPL
Martin Richards at Cambridge University
Could deal with only specific problems.
1970
B
Ken Thompson at AT & T
Could deal with only specific problems.
1972
C
Dennis Ritchie at AT & T
Lost generally of BCPL and B restored.
 
WHAT IS THE ANSI-C STANDARD?
When it became evident that the C programming language was becoming a very popular language available on a wide range of computers, a group of concerned individuals met to propose a standard set of rules for the use of the C programming language. The group represented all sectors of the software industry and after many meetings, and many preliminary drafts, they finally wrote an acceptable standard for the C language. It has been accepted by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI), and by the International Standards Organization (ISO). It is not forced upon any group or user, but since it is so widely accepted, it would be economic suicide for any compiler writer to refuse to conform to the standard.
 
C IS USUALLY FIRST
The programming language C was originally developed by Dennis Ritchie of Bell Laboratories and was designed to run on a PDP-11 with a UNIX operating system. In the late seventies C began to replace the more familiar languages of that time like PL/I, ALGOL etc... Although it was originally intended to run under UNIX, there has been a great interest in running it under the MS-DOS operating system on the IBM PC and compatibles. It is an excellent language for this environment because of the simplicity of expression, the compactness of the code, and the wide range of applicability. Also, due to the simplicity and ease of writing a C compiler, it is usually the first high level language available on any new computer, including microcomputers, minicomputers, and mainframes. C is not the best beginning language because it is somewhat cryptic in nature. It allows the programmer a wide range of operations from high level down to a very low level, approaching the level of assembly language.
‘C ‘is popularly know as the programmer’s language, since it was created, influenced and field tested by real working programmers. ‘C ‘is a simple, elegant programming language that is the choice of increasing number of programmers. C is the result of a development process that started with an older language called BCPL. BCPL was developed by Ken Thompson. B led to the development of C in the 1970s.
Possibly why C seems to be so popular is because it is reliable, simple and easy to use. 
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