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How important is C really?

This is a discussion on How important is C really? within the General Discussions forums, part of the Community Boards category; I have been looking around at jobs/internships for software engineering, and all the programming languages I see are Java,C++, and ...

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    How important is C really?

    I have been looking around at jobs/internships for software engineering, and all the programming languages I see are Java,C++, and maybe Javascript / XML type of language. I rarely see C, where are all the jobs at? Also, I want to be very knowledgeable on how the C language operates, can someone direct me to a book or some website that will get close to the hardware level of how C is working its "Magic". I feel it is important to know the real mechanics behind the language other than loops and control statements.

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    new2C- It's interesting to understand computer at hardware level. I'm also new to C, Here a is course by Richard Buckland, It will help you i guess.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hE7l6Adoiiw
    Last edited by Salem; 11-17-2013 at 12:02 AM. Reason: redirect removed
    new2C- likes this.

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    Unregistered User Yarin's Avatar
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    This smells like spam.
    Apologies if I'm wrong.
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    Registered User MutantJohn's Avatar
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    I would definitely say C is important and that I wouldn't judge importance based off of the number of job openings. I used to be hardcore diehard C only then I tried out C++ and it's pretty amazing and now I love both.

    But I've been googling around and the way the programming industry seems to operate is, just make something that works, no matter how inelegant. I think there was someone on this board whose signature can be paraphrased as, it's cheaper to buy hardware that's 25% faster than it is to code something 25% faster, considering the development time of porting the code.

    I've never actually had a programming job but I was inspired to google Java vs. C++ and that was basically the view of the industry that I got from people's comments.

    Developing in C takes a lot of time, even if you write beautiful and elegant code. Companies don't want to invest the time into development because it's too expensive which is a valid point. I started to figure this when companies would ask for C++ instead of C as C++ has a lot of useful built-in structures and algorithms which reduces the development time.

    And then Java is chosen over C++ as it is supposed to further reduce development time but this is variable for the project you're working on. Granted, this is just what I read online.

    As for why you should use C, I think C is better for anything requiring more low level features, less common data structures (something not solved with a simple std::queue or std::vector, etc.) and for embedded programming as well. I think C++ is fantastic for scientific applications and I know most game studios develop in C++ as well. I have no idea what Java is used for.

    Someone, correct me if I'm wrong.

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    and the hat of wrongness Salem's Avatar
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    It's just another one of those "visit my redirection site" spammers.

    Get the real content from the original source.
    Lecture 1: Higher Computing - Richard Buckland UNSW 2008 - YouTube
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    Unregistered User Yarin's Avatar
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    Salem, edit tanzeelniazi's link to go to the video as you provide it
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    Thanks for your guys' input. I would really like to know how the C compiler works, does anyone know any good books?

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    C++ Witch laserlight's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by new2C-
    I would really like to know how the C compiler works, does anyone know any good books?
    The C programming language is officially specified in a standard, not as a reference implementation, so we do not talk about "the C compiler" as there are many of them (unless it is obvious which one we are referring to). For books, a well known text is Compilers: Principles, Techniques, & Tools by Aho, Lam, Sethi and Ullman.
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    Laserlight, will this book give me a good grasp on the "Standard" and underlying layer of abstraction?

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    C++まいる!Cをこわせ! Elysia's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MutantJohn View Post
    As for why you should use C, I think C is better for anything requiring more low level features, less common data structures (something not solved with a simple std::queue or std::vector, etc.) and for embedded programming as well. I think C++ is fantastic for scientific applications and I know most game studios develop in C++ as well. I have no idea what Java is used for.

    Someone, correct me if I'm wrong.
    Why do you think that?
    Usually when you think about languages, I usually tend to go along the line that higher level is better. So you pick the highest possible level language that a) meets your requirements and b) is available for your platform.
    Language-wise, there is little that separates C from C++. C++ supports pretty much all that is C, and you can sometimes do it more efficiently (e.g., std::sort), so usually it boils down to external factors that has nothing to do with the language. Such factors include compiler support, optimization support, cost, competence, etc.
    Quote Originally Posted by Adak View Post
    io.h certainly IS included in some modern compilers. It is no longer part of the standard for C, but it is nevertheless, included in the very latest Pelles C versions.
    Quote Originally Posted by Salem View Post
    You mean it's included as a crutch to help ancient programmers limp along without them having to relearn too much.

    Outside of your DOS world, your header file is meaningless.

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    (?<!re)tired Mario F.'s Avatar
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    MutantJohn post was correct, new2C. Please ignore Elysia.
    The programmer’s wife tells him: “Run to the store and pick up a loaf of bread. If they have eggs, get a dozen.”
    The programmer comes home with 12 loaves of bread.


    Originally Posted by brewbuck:
    Reimplementing a large system in another language to get a 25% performance boost is nonsense. It would be cheaper to just get a computer which is 25% faster.

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    C++まいる!Cをこわせ! Elysia's Avatar
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    Mario F.'s post is wrong, new2C. Please ignore Mario F.
    Quote Originally Posted by Adak View Post
    io.h certainly IS included in some modern compilers. It is no longer part of the standard for C, but it is nevertheless, included in the very latest Pelles C versions.
    Quote Originally Posted by Salem View Post
    You mean it's included as a crutch to help ancient programmers limp along without them having to relearn too much.

    Outside of your DOS world, your header file is meaningless.

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    (?<!re)tired Mario F.'s Avatar
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    Don't think you now have a dilema, new2C. This is easy to fix.

    Just follow our advice. Ignore both me and Elysia and consider MutantJohn post. That's a win.
    The programmer’s wife tells him: “Run to the store and pick up a loaf of bread. If they have eggs, get a dozen.”
    The programmer comes home with 12 loaves of bread.


    Originally Posted by brewbuck:
    Reimplementing a large system in another language to get a 25% performance boost is nonsense. It would be cheaper to just get a computer which is 25% faster.

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    C++まいる!Cをこわせ! Elysia's Avatar
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    A dilemma indeed, because it was YOUR statement that MutantJohn's post was correct, but as we seem to have concluded, new2C shouldn't listen to your (or my) advice. Therefore, we cannot conclude that MutantJohn's post is correct.
    So new2C cannot be certain MutantJohn's post is good because YOU said it. new2C cannot listen to me because YOU said it and new2C can't listen to you because I said it.
    Ah, what a dilemma. We're going around in circles now. Happy?
    Quote Originally Posted by Adak View Post
    io.h certainly IS included in some modern compilers. It is no longer part of the standard for C, but it is nevertheless, included in the very latest Pelles C versions.
    Quote Originally Posted by Salem View Post
    You mean it's included as a crutch to help ancient programmers limp along without them having to relearn too much.

    Outside of your DOS world, your header file is meaningless.

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    Registered User whiteflags's Avatar
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    Well, ignoring a statement by definition requires that we give no consideration to its content, so there would be no dilemma. Mario said to ignore Elysia. Elysia said to ignore Mario. Doing both of these is not difficult. And this leaves John's point for consideration. Although, we also have to consider if this opinion about C being held so dearly was based upon any knowledge whatsoever, or if it was in fact a value judgment. If it was a value judgment, then we have a belief about C, to which anyone can hold or abandon.

    new2c,

    You've started a language war thread.

    Also, languages, really, are all about where you want to work.

    C is still relevant in that there are still C jobs, I think. Take a look, and see if anything anyone is doing anywhere using C is worth doing to you. The truth about the business is basically that languages are fads. If a company makes a language, like Microsoft and C#, (an answer to C++ I suppose) then they will strive to use it in their products or services. This makes it relevant to a small degree.

    As far as learning how to program goes, I will not deny that a high level language is the way to go, but I would aim even a little higher than C++, since C++ was my third language, and there are environments that can quickly achieve results. These results are easier to get in languages such as python, PERL, Ruby. On the web, that is, using the web as an environment, you have php as well. (My local power plant asked for PHP experience. It was a little shocking.)

    I don't think there is any rhyme or reason in asking anyone's opinion on this. The only way to lose is not to play the game.

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