Is this a cast?
x = 1;
a = (float)x;
This is a very simplified example of what their doing, but I'm used to seeing static_cast<float>. What's the difference here?
Then, right below it, after initializing x to 0 again, they do this:
t = float(x) / 35.0f;
putting the paratheses around the variable instead of float.
My book says something to the effect that parentheses around the type or around the variable are equivalent and inherited from C. C++ includes the more explicit cast form static_cast<float> and is equivalent to the other two.