This book is meant to help the reader learn how to program in C. It is the definitive reference guide, now in a second edition. Although the first edition was written in 1978, it continues to be a worldwide best-seller. This second edition brings the classic original up to date to include the ANSI standard. From the Preface: We have tried to retain the brevity of the first edition. C is not a big language, and it is not well served by a big book. We have improved the exposition of critical features, such as pointers, that are central to C programming. We have refined the original examples, and have added new examples in several chapters. For instance, the treatment of complicated declarations is augmented by programs that convert declarations into words and vice versa. As before, all examples have been tested directly from the text, which is in machine-readable form. As we said in the first preface to the first edition, C "wears well as one's experience with it grows." With a decade more experience, we still feel that way. We hope that this book will help you to learn C and use it well.
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Just about every C programmer I respect learned C from this book. Unlike many of the 1,000 page doorstops stuffed with CD-ROMs that have become popular, this volume is concise and powerful (if somewhat dangerous)--like C itself. And it was written by Kernighan himself. Need we say more? --Amazon.comReview:
This book is not "for Dummies". It assumes that you already have some knowledge of structured programming languages (i.e. Pascal). For example, this book spends four well-written pages explaining everything you need to know about functions. If you don't know what a function is, this will clearly not be enough. However, if you do know about functions, this book will not drone on and on for an entire chapter or two on the subject like some of the foot-crunching tomes the size of an encyclopdia. The book is expensive ($40) for its size (approx. 250pgs.), but it is worth every penny. To quote the authors: "C is not a big language, and it is not served well by a big book." As a bonus, almost anything you need to know about C can be found in seconds using the excellent index. It should be noted that this is a language reference and will NOT tell you how to use your editing environment or compiler. In summary, intermediate or advanced programmers should be able to learn C with reasonable proficiency in a short amount of time. --By email@example.com on November 8, 1997
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