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C/C++: About

The history of the C language and about the C++ language.

C Programming Language

C was created by Dennis Ritchie at the Bell Telephone Laboratories in 1972. It was created for the specific purpose of designing the UNIX operating system. From the beginning, C was intended to allow programmers to rapidly get things done. It marked the beginning of the modern age of programming.

Because C is such a powerful language its use quickly spread beyond Bell Labs, and soon, different organizations began utilizing their own versions of C and subtle differences between implementations started to cause problems for programmers. In response, the American National Standards Institute formed a committee in 1983 to define a standard for C, which became known as the ANSI Standard C.

The language is named C because its predecessor was named B and was also developed at Bell Laboratories.

C++ Programming Language

C++ is a multi-purpose programming language designed to make programming easier than with C. C++ contains the entire C language. A programmer can break an application up into manageable pieces by defining new types that closely model the application. This technique for program design is called data abstraction. Objects of user-defined types contain type information. Such objects can be used conveniently and safely in contexts in which their type cannot be determined at compile time. Programs using objects like this are called object based programs. These techniques result in shorter and easier to maintain code/programs.

As one of the most popular programming languages, C++ is implemented on a wide variety of hardware. As an efficient compiler to native code, its application domains include pretty much all aspects of software from systems software to device drivers to video games. C++ has greatly influenced many other programming languages, like JavaScript, Java and C#. C++ contains everything C does plus object-oriented programming. Everything learned in C still applies to C++. The language began as enhancements to C, first adding classes, then virtual functions, operator overloading, multiple inheritance, templates and exception handling, among other features.

C++ was invented by Bjarne Stroustrup at Bell Laboratories in 1979.

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