ANSI C

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(Redirected from ANSI C standard)

ANSI C (Standard C) is one standardized version of the C programming language.

Most programming languages have differences from one implementation to another. For example, two different C compilers may have different feature sets, or may implement certain parts of the language in subtly different ways. The platform on which the program is being run can also influence its behavior: different operating systems can behave in different ways. This creates a problem for programmers who wish to write portable software — the more differences between compilers and platforms exist, the more work that must be done to port software to another system.

The community solves this problem by defining a subset of a programming language and standardizing it so different manufacturers abide by it; this means that as long as the programmer sticks with the subset, the software can be compiled by any platform that follows the standard. In this case, the American National Standards Institute created a standard for C, and it is referred to as ANSI C. When compilers and programmers stick to one standard such as ANSI C, then portability follows relatively easily.

Frequently, it's unreasonable to try to write any non-trivial program in such a way that it can be ported from one platform to another without changes; in this case, one tries to restrict the non-portable code to minimize the effort of porting.

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