How to Learn Easily C Programming

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You’d like to learn how to learn easily c programming, that’s why you are here, right? I bet it is not easy and fun to study. Lucky for you, this article has given you a good chance to find out more about best way to learn c programming free.

The C programming language was originally developed for and implemented on the UNIX operating system by Dennis Ritchie. The C language, which is quite simple, is not tied to any particular hardware or system. This makes it easier for a user to write programs that will run without many (or any) changes on practically all machines.

The C language is often called a middle-level computer language as it combines the elements of high-level languages with the functionalism of assembly language. C programming allows the manipulation of bits, bytes, and addresses—giving the programmer more control over exactly how the program will behave and more direct access to the mechanics of the underlying hardware.

C was created, influenced, and field-tested by working programmers. The end result is that C gives the programmer what the programmer wants.

C++ is an enhanced version of the C language. C++ includes everything that’s part of C and adds support for object-oriented programming (OOP). In addition, C++ also contains many improvements and features that make it a “better C,” independent of object oriented programming.

The C++ language is actually extensible since we can define new types in such a way that they act just like the predefined types which are part of the standard language.

If you just use C++ as a better C, you will not be using all of its power. Like any quality tool, C++ must be used the way it was designed to be used to exploit its richness. Some of the new features include encapsulation, inline function calls, overloading operators, inheritance, and polymorphism.

Facts about C

  • C was invented to write an operating system called UNIX.
  • C is a successor of B language which was introduced around the early 1970s.
  • The language was formalized in 1988 by the American National Standard Institute (ANSI).
  • The UNIX OS was totally written in C.
  • Today C is the most widely used and popular System Programming Language.
  • Most of the state-of-the-art software have been implemented using C.

Applications of C Programming

C was initially used for system development work, particularly the programs that make-up the operating system. C was adopted as a system development language because it produces code that runs nearly as fast as the code written in assembly language. Some examples of the use of C are –

  • Operating Systems
  • Language Compilers
  • Assemblers
  • Text Editors
  • Print Spoolers
  • Network Drivers
  • Modern Programs
  • Databases
  • Language Interpreters
  • Utilities
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Audience

This tutorial is designed for software programmers with a need to understand the C programming language starting from scratch. This C tutorial will give you enough understanding on C programming language from where you can take yourself to higher level of expertise.

Prerequisites

Before proceeding with this tutorial, you should have a basic understanding of Computer Programming terminologies. A basic understanding of any of the programming languages will help you in understanding the C programming concepts and move fast on the learning track.

Look at the Example Code

Reading is usually about the words on the page, but learning to program is about code. When you’re first learning to program, you should make sure to look at, and try to understand, every example. When I first learned to program, I would sometimes read the code examples before the text, and try to figure out what they did. It doesn’t always work, but it did force me to look at the example very carefully, and it often helped make the writeups clearer.

If you want to see what sample code looks like, you can read this site’s introductory programming tutorial. This tutorial spends a great deal of time talking about the sample code to help you work through exactly what the code does.

Don’t Just Read Example Code–Run It

But when you’re reading a programming tutorial (or book), it’s easy to look at the sample code and say “I get it, I get it, that makes sense”. Of course, you might get it, but you might not get it, and you just don’t know it. There’s only one way to find out–do something with that code.

If you haven’t already, get a compiler like Code::Blocks set up.

Then type the sample code into a compiler–if you type it, instead of copying and pasting it, you will really force yourself to go through everything that is there. Typing the code will force you to pay attention to the details of the syntax of the language–things like those funny semicolons that seem to go after every line.

Then compile it and run it. Make sure it does what you think it does.

Then change it. Software is the most easily changed machinery on the planet. You can experiment easily, try new things, see what happens; the changes will happen almost immediately, and there is no risk of death or mayhem. The easiest way to learn new language features is to take some code that works one way, and change it.

Write your Own Code as Soon as Possible

Once you understand something about the language–or even if you’re still getting your head around it–start writing sample programs that use it. Sometimes it’s hard to find good ideas for what programs to write. That’s OK, you don’t have to come up with every idea at the beginning.

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You can find some programming challenges on this site.

You can also reimplement the examples from the book or tutorial you are reading. Try to do so without looking back at the sample code; it won’t be as easy as it seems. This technique can work especially well if you tweak the sample code.

If you can’t think of a small program to write, but you have in mind a larger program you want to implement, like a game, you could start building small pieces that you can later use for a game. Whether you use them later or not, you will get the same useful experience.

Learn to Use a Debugger

I already talked about the importance of debugging in The 5 Most Common Problems New Programmers Face–And How You Can Solve Them. But it bears repeating; the sooner you learn good debugging techniques, easier it will be to learn to program.

The first step in doing so is to learn how to use a tool called a debugger, which allows you to step through your code.

A debugger will allow you to step line by line through a piece of code. It will let you see the values of variables, and whether the code inside an if statement is executed.

A debugger can help you quickly answer questions about what your code is doing.

int main()
{
        int x;
        int y;
        if( x > 4 )  // <-- what is the value of x here?
        {
                y = 5;   // <-- did this line of code execute?
        }
}

A final word about debuggers: the first time you learn about a debugger, it will take you longer to fix the problems with your code. After the tenth or so bug, it will really start to pay off. And believe me, you will have way more than ten bugs in your programming career.

I often saw students unwilling to use a debugger. These students really made life hard on themselves, taking ages to find very simple bugs. The sooner you learn to use a debugger, the sooner it will pay off.

Seek out More Sources

If you don’t understand something, there’s a good possibility the way it was explained just didn’t click.

First, look for alternative explanations. The internet is filled with information about programming, and some explanations work better for different people; you might need pictures, someone else might not. There are also lots of good books with detailed explanations.

But if that doesn’t work, the easiest way to figure out where your misunderstanding lies is to ask someone else. But try to go beyond saying, “I don’t understand. Please explain.” You’re likely to get a link back to the same text you didn’t understand. Instead, rephrase your understanding of the text in your words. The more your question reveals about what you are thinking, the easier it will be for a knowledgeable expert to answer it. Programmers sometimes have a reputation for being grumpy about answering questions, but I think the reason is that they want to make progress in a conversation, and that requires both sides to put in effort. If you ask a smart, detailed question that shows you are thinking, you will generally get good results.

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How can I get started with C and C++?

To get started with C or C++, what you’ll want in most cases, at the very least, is a compiler—although nowadays you can also learn C online by experimenting a bit with “hello world” C projects in-browser.

Compilers are programs that can be run through command-line interfaces (CLIs). They read the entire program and convert it into object code, which is a translation of the program source code into a form that the computer can execute directly.

To make life easier, you can go for full-fledged IDEs that can make your experience with C or C++ even more pleasant.

Windows

There are a lot of good compilers available on Windows.

On Windows, Visual Studio provides a C++ compiler.

The compiler can also build C programs.

Visual Studio comes with its own powerful, feature-rich IDE, making it a neat choice for anyone getting started with C or C++ or someone primarily targeting the Windows platform.

If you are looking for something more standard compliant, GCC (MinGW) might be what you need. The Codeblocks IDE works exceptionally well in this setup.

Clang, too, is now a formidable choice on Windows—it’s even used to build Google Chrome nowadays.

Other cross-platform IDEs exist, such as Eclipse CDTJetbrains CLion, and Netbeans, that provide fully functional C and C++ development environments. Lately, however, these are being eclipsed (pardon the irony) by Visual Studio Code, which is also available for Linux and Mac environments.

Linux

If you are on Linux, you probably have GCC installed as a part of your distribution already. If not, installing it should be just a matter of a single command:

# Ubuntu
sudo apt-get install build-essential

# Fedora
sudo yum install gcc gcc-c++

# Arch Linux
sudo pacman -S base-devel

The Codeblocks IDE and Eclipse CDT work equally well on Linux as they do on Windows.

Mac / Mac OS X / OS X / macOS

On a Mac you can use Clang or GCC—both are available for free. While GCC has support for a wider range of C and C++ standards, Clang will work fine for most cases.

Clang should already be installed.

Conclusion:

Have you ever been asked by your boss to write a program in C programming language? I won’t keep it secret that you are the first one to be asked. Okay, then take this piece of information with surprise. The programming language is considered to be one of the hardest languages particularly for beginners. Why? It is because of unfamiliarity and a lack of experience in learning the particular language.

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