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C Primer Plus, Fourth Edition by Stephen Prata

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Language Standards

Currently, many C implementations are available. Ideally, when you write a C program, it should work the same on any implementation, providing it doesn't use machine-specific programming. For this to be true in practice, different implementations need to conform to a recognized standard.

At first, there was no official standard for C. Instead, the first edition of The C Programming Language by Brian Kernighan and Dennis Ritchie (1978) became the accepted standard, usually referred to as K&R C or classic C. In particular, the “C Reference Manual” in that book's appendix acted as the guide to C implementations. Compilers, for example, would claim to offer a full K&R implementation. However, although this appendix defined the ...

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