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Use comments abundantly. • When you want to comment, begin with /*. End the comment with */. • If you want to use the new style of comment, begin the comment with //. This kind of comment, however, isn’t yet approved by ANSI C. Pitfalls • Don’t use redundant comments. Worthless comments aren’t helpful, and they waste valuable programming time. • Don’t nest one comment inside another. If you want to comment out a section of your program, you must make sure that the section doesn’t contain other comments.
If you’ve never written a program in your life, this chapter begins at the beginning, teaching you introductory programming concepts, explaining what a program is, and providing a short history of the C language. Get ready to be excited! C is a programming language rich in its capabilities. What Is a Program? A computer isn’t smart. On your worst days, you are light-years ahead of your computer in intelligence. The computer’s only advantage is that it obeys your instructions. Your computer will sit for days, processing the data you supply, without getting bored and without wanting overtime pay.
Pitfalls • Don’t be sloppy about your typing. When C needs a certain special character such as a brace, a square bracket will not do. • Don’t put leading zeroes before integers unless the integer is zero. In Review This chapter’s goal was to familiarize you with the “look and feel” of a C program, primarily the main() function that includes executable C statements. As you saw, C is a free-form language that isn’t picky about spacing. C is, however, picky about lowercase letters. C requires lowercase spellings of all its commands and functions, such as printf().