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C Programming Language (2nd Edition) Paperback – Mar 22 1988

4.8 out of 5 stars 207 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 274 pages
  • Publisher: Prentice Hall; 2 edition (March 22 1988)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0131103628
  • ISBN-13: 978-0131103627
  • Product Dimensions: 17.6 x 1.8 x 23.2 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 440 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars 207 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #561 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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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.

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This is by far the best quality over quantity tech related book I've ever had the pleasure to read yet. Personally I came from a Python background before starting this book, and with it having such clean and easy to write programming style, I was always very intimidated by C, C++, Java, and so on. Well let me tell you this book makes C so much easier and so much less intimidating, it's still a HARD book but it's written and explained so well that with some basic programming knowledge you can learn A LOT from this book.

One of my biggest struggles with Python was using it's giant library of pre-built and importable functions that are built into the language. C still has a lot of this built in, but what's different with this particular book is it really TEACHES you how to build functions and programs and breaks down every part and stage of it incredibly well (Seriously, I was blown away by the first chapter of this book which acts as a basic tutorial.)

The biggest thing I've taken from starting this book is it's helped me begin to appreciate a language like Python more since it has tons of useful and already built in functions, but going back to an older language like C has opened my eyes up to programming like never before. Using modern languages is "easier" to learn, but if you really want to become a better programmer you need to go back to where we came from to how we got here today. Also even though I may not use C very often (I'm studying to become a Sys Admin), I feel like it's very beneficial for me to improve my programming skills as a whole and I feel like working with C so far has made working with Python even easier.
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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.
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Format: Paperback
This is the book. Period. If you don't own this, change professions.
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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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It is difficult to avoid cliches when talking about this book - it is just so good, that one can't help heaping superlatives on it.
This book is affectionately known as 'K & R', after the names of the authors, and it is almost definitely the most widely respected of all books on any given programming language.
This is the book that introduced the 'Hello World!' program to the world :-), which is now practically a standard first program in any introductory book on any programming language.
This is straight from the creators, and the implied authority, while an excellent reason in itself for taking a look at the book, pales in comparison to its other merits - brevity & clarity being foremost.

This book is best appreciated if you already have some programming background - i say this from experience, since i knew Fortran 77 & Pascal before i learnt C, and the knowledge of Pascal, in particular,made it much easier for me to pick up C than classmates for whom it was the first programming language.
Of course, if you're new to programming, you could still try learning from this, but it might be a bit of a struggle. If so, the books by Kelley & Pohl, K.N.King or Gottfried(Schaum series) may be useful for 'getting upto speed' with C first, and then coming to K & R.
C is the one language which is both 'high level' and 'low level' at the same time - to date, it is the nearest to the ideal of a programming language that is easy enough in description to be followed by human readers, and at the same time close enough to the machine's language to be executed fast.There are faster languages, to be sure - assembly language is necessarily faster than any high level language.
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