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C Programming Language (2nd Edition) [Paperback]

Brian W. Kernighan , Dennis Ritchie
4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (198 customer reviews)
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Book Description

March 22 1988 0131103628 978-0131103627 2

The authors present the complete guide to ANSI standard C language programming. Written by the developers of C, this new version helps readers keep up with the finalized ANSI standard for C while showing how to take advantage of C's rich set of operators, economy of expression, improved control flow, and data structures. The 2/E has been completely rewritten with additional examples and problem sets to clarify the implementation of difficult language constructs. For years, C programmers have let K&R guide them to building well-structured and efficient programs. Now this same help is available to those working with ANSI compilers. Includes detailed coverage of the C language plus the official C language reference manual for at-a-glance help with syntax notation, declarations, ANSI changes, scope rules, and the list goes on and on.


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Product Description

From Amazon

An indisputably classic computing text, Kernighan and Ritchie's The C Programming Language, 2nd Edition, is the standard reference for learning and using ANSI C. Written by the co-inventors of C, this concise tutorial has a well-deserved reputation for clarity and precision as it defines one of the most successful programming languages of all time. It's an essential reference, which will be useful for beginners and experienced programmers alike.

This masterful tour of C features concentrates on essential programming constructs, from the basics--such as data types, variables, operators and flow control--to more advanced topics. Short, effective programming samples are the rule here. (Many samples work with strings and text files). Along the way, the authors don't shy away from the thornier C topics. For example, when discussing pointers, they look at pointers to pointers and even pointers to functions. Later in the book, they offer useful code for a flexible memory allocation scheme and a binary tree. The text concludes with the formal specification for C and a compact listing of the functions in the C standard header files.

C is still a great first programming language, and its influence is felt in Java and C++, both of which support many programming constructs based on C, while adding support for objects. The C Programming Language is still an excellent reference to one of our most successful and efficient programming languages. It's a book that deserves a place on the bookshelf of any C/C++ developer, regardless of your experience with the language. --Richard Dragan, Amazon.com

Topics covered:

  • overview of ANSI C
  • introductory language tutorial
  • data types
  • variables
  • arrays
  • operators and operator precedence
  • flow control
  • functions
  • header files
  • recursion
  • macros and the C pre-processor
  • pointers and arrays
  • advanced pointer types (pointers to pointers, pointers to functions)
  • multidimensional arrays
  • structures and unions
  • dynamic memory allocation
  • console and file I/O
  • UNIX file functions
  • Formal description of the standard C language
  • Reference to C standard library header files and functions

From the Publisher

This second editon describes C as defined by the ANSI standard. This book is meant to help the reader learn how to program in C. The book assumes some familiarity with basic programming concepts like variables, assignment statements, loops, and functions. A novice programmer should be able to read along and pick up the language.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index
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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Very strange but enjoyable Feb. 27 2004
Format:Paperback
This is one of those books that is put aside on the shelf once you just start reading. One year later, you come back and have a go at it once more. Only this time you pause and think what a great book this has always been and you'd wish you had read it earlier.
Secondly alot of people here say this is *the* book for beginners. In my honest opinion, this is not so. It's way too technical for beginners to programming. My suggestion is that if you have any academic or professional background with C or any other language, then this book will serve you well. Otherwise don't buy this book, you will simply get lost. Read some good intro books on C which don't go into details. Once you get your feet wet, go ahead and buy this book. You will enjoy it.
There is a mis-paragraphing in the sections in chapter 5 where they are discussing the method alloc(). The value returned in the method code and the discussion of what the method returns is inconsistent. The discussion could have been put in better words.
Overall this is a very good book. A must have for serious C programmers. I would advise you to read the code *before* you read the discussion, it will help you undertsand better, especially if you like learning by example, otherwise, do as you please.
I am not a fan of huge 500-1000 page books on Computers. This book beats them all, well done K&R. Enjoy your read on this one when you buy it.
Cheers
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars K&R all the way! June 5 2004
Format:Paperback
This is the book. Period. If you don't own this, change professions.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The only C refrence you need June 22 2004
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
This book is short and sweet. It gets straight to the point by keeping it simple(unlike many programming books that just wander off into the back woods talking about some complex programs when its trying to explain a simple syntac). I recommend this book along with C Primer Plus, then C unleashed if you wish to contiune that far down the beaten path.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Format:Paperback
For some reason, this book was assigned to one of my intro to comp-sci classes. It definitely does not fit such profile as it provides a great overview of the language, how it's built, how it works, and its applications, however, it does not teach to program. If you already know the basics of programming and are proficient in a similar language (e.g. Java), this may be an interesting read to understand the workings of the C language, but by no means expect it to provide little "classes" to teach you to be a C programmer.

Good overview of the language, targetted at more advanced programmers.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A great Bible. Not a great tutorial. June 28 2003
Format:Paperback
I got this book and tried to use it to learn C. I got very frustrated and eventually went out and bought "C by Example" which is more of a beginners type book. After getting my feet wet with the basic concepts I came back to this book and could actually use it to learn from.
If you have no programming experience than I do not reccommend this as your first book. Get a more introductory book first and then dive into the K&R book.
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5.0 out of 5 stars pick it up March 16 2004
Format:Paperback
I bought this book a few years back as a first book on C programming. I heard this book was by the smart guys that wrote the language, and I was going to get it straight from the source. I had one problem though; I couldn't handle the info. At that time I got discouraged 1/3 of the way through the introductory chapter and put it down. I didn't pick it up again until a couple of weeks ago.
Having since read another introductory text on C, I can understand this book now. Now that I can understand it, I enjoy and appreciate the elegant clarity of the concise writing style. It's a great second or third book on C. It provides the foundations necessary to advance to the intermediate programming level and beyond.
This book is very condensed. Although it's short, it's not a book most of us will read very fast. It's quite different from most modern books on programming. Still, it's quite digestible if you've had a good introduction to C and programming in general. For me, this book filled in all the nagging little questions left by other introductory books. The index is excellent and useful. I cannot overstate how much a good index is worth in a book like this. Appendix A, which is a reference manual for the language is also excellent.
Although the book is dated, its effectiveness is not hindered by time. It covers the language backwards and forewards with absolute clarity. If you really want to know C, I suggest picking up this book after an introductory text. I know that the information in this book will save me from hours of frustrating beginner mistakes. I think I'm ready to move on to Stevens now.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A must for any C or C++ programmer Oct. 10 2003
Format:Paperback
If you intend to do any real world programming, you will need to know C. Whether writing in C, or just maintaining someone else's C code. Even if you're doing C++, It's still based on C.
If you want to be able to use C, you should have this book. Contrary to what others have reported, it is possible to learn C from this book. It just isn't spoonfed to you. You have to look at things, and apply concepts rather than copy and modify code.
I got my first copy of this book about 7 years ago, and I still carry it in my laptop bag, which goes pretty much wherever I do.
One thing however. If you're expecting to learn how to program from this book, you WILL be disappointed. You should already know something of structured programming languages. For that matter, if you are new to programming, C itself isn't your best choice. Python seems to be the modern beginner language of choice. Others choose Visual Basic, however that has it's own problems.
Overall however this is the best C programming book out there, if you're willing to make the effort to understand it.
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Most recent customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Good Resource book
Saved me a couple times for key-words in my Software Development class.
Published 3 days ago by Neptunian
5.0 out of 5 stars Must have C bible.
My professors swear by this book and recommend it to all their students.
Published 1 month ago by Edward
4.0 out of 5 stars Great book for beginners
Great book if you already know the basics! It is very in depth and great for the hobbiest or student who wants or needs to learn the c language. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Lynne Kuzie
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic C programming book
This book is well written and easy to follow with examples.
If you want to know if you can do something in C, it's a quick look. Read more
Published 8 months ago by Michael Busby
5.0 out of 5 stars A classic, but not useful for the beginner
This book is a classic explanation of the C language from the top brass themselves. This book was bought as a decorative piece and these days is good for that purpose only. Read more
Published 10 months ago by elginblatherford
3.0 out of 5 stars classic but dated
It's the bible for sure, but not good for learning. Have a copy for your second C book if you want to get serious down the road.
Published 14 months ago by Terryl Brennan
5.0 out of 5 stars Simply indispensable
If you are in any introductory Computer Science course, you are going to want a copy of this book. It's a quick and concise go-to manual that tells you exactly what you want to... Read more
Published 23 months ago by Erik
4.0 out of 5 stars The perfect book to master C
This book provides great resources to learn C. Indeed, some basic knowledge in programming and mathematics is needed. Read more
Published on Aug. 23 2011 by Samuel Lavallée-Daunais
5.0 out of 5 stars This is the C book for UNIX users.
While maybe not showing extensions of various UNIX flavors it also does not clutter with .net and other temporally contrived notions that inhibit portability. Read more
Published on Sept. 24 2010 by bernie
2.0 out of 5 stars Don't use ANSI C, if your just learning.
In practical terms, ANSI C functions are buffered, meaning they consume more memory then they should compared to other third party languages like Borland Turbo C++ that have non... Read more
Published on May 10 2005 by Neil W. Fisk
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