Absolute Beginner's Guide to C / Edition 2

Absolute Beginner's Guide to C / Edition 2

4.1 17
by Greg Perry

View All Available Formats & Editions

ISBN-10: 0672305100

ISBN-13: 9780672305108

Pub. Date: 04/28/1994

Publisher: Sams

For beginning programmers, this updated edition answers all C programming questions. This bestseller talks to readers at their level, explaining every aspect of how to get started and learn the C language quickly. Readers also find out where to learn more about C. This book includes tear-out reference card of C functions and statements, a hierarchy chart, and other


For beginning programmers, this updated edition answers all C programming questions. This bestseller talks to readers at their level, explaining every aspect of how to get started and learn the C language quickly. Readers also find out where to learn more about C. This book includes tear-out reference card of C functions and statements, a hierarchy chart, and other valuable information. It uses special icons, notes, clues, warnings, and rewards to make understanding easier. And the clear and friendly style presumes no programming knowledge.

Product Details

Publication date:
Other Sams Series
Edition description:
Sales rank:
Product dimensions:
9.04(w) x 7.24(h) x 0.87(d)

Table of Contents

ABG to C, 2E -- Table of Contents

[Figures are not included in this sample chapter]

ABG to C, 2E


  • Chapter - Introduction

Part 1 First Steps with C

  • Chapter 1 - What Is C Programming?

    • Rewarding and Fun
    • What Is a Program?
    • What You Need to Write C Programs
    • The Programming Process
    • Using C

  • Chapter 2 - How Do I Get Started in C?

    • With the main() Function
    • Getting a Glimpse
    • The main() Function
    • Kinds of Data
    • In Review

  • Chapter 3 - How Do I Know What's Happening?

    • Through Comments
    • Commenting on Your Code
    • Specifying Comments
    • White Space
    • The Future of Comments
    • In Review

  • Chapter 4 - Can I See Results?

    • With printf()
    • What printf() Does
    • The Format of printf()
    • Printing Strings
    • Escape Sequences
    • Conversion Characters
    • In Review

  • Chapter 5 - How Do I Store Stuff?

    • Using Variables
    • Kinds of Variables
    • Naming Variables
    • Defining Variables
    • Storing Data in Variables
    • In Review

  • Chapter 6 - Can C Store Words?

    • In Character Arrays
    • "I Am the String Terminator!"
    • The Length of Strings
    • Character Arrays: Lists of Characters
    • Initializing Strings
    • In Review

  • Chapter 7 - What Do #include and #define Mean?

    • They're Preprocessor Directives
    • Including Files
    • Where Do I Put #include Directives?
    • Defining Constants
    • In Review

  • Chapter 8 - Can I Ask the User Questions?

    • With scanf()
    • Looking at scanf()
    • Prompting for scanf()
    • Problems with scanf()
    • In Review

  • Chapter 9 - How Does C Do Math?

    • With Operators
    • The Basics
    • Order of Operators
    • Break the Rules with Parentheses
    • Assignments Everywhere
    • In Review

Part 2 The Operating Room

  • Chapter 10 - What Else Can I Do with Expressions?

    • Combine Operators and Give Typecasts
    • Compound Assignment
    • Watch That Order!
    • Typecasting: Hollywood Could Take Lessons from C
    • In Review

  • Chapter 11 - Can I Compare Two Values?

    • With Relational Operators
    • Testing Data
    • Using if
    • Otherwise...: Using else
    • In Review

  • Chapter 12 - How Do I Test Several Things at Once?

    • With Logical Operators
    • Getting Logical
    • The Order of Logical Operators
    • In Review

  • Chapter 13 - Are There More Operators?

    • Additional C Operators
    • Goodbye if-else; Hello Conditional
    • The Small-Change Operators: ++ and --
    • Sizing Up the Situation
    • In Review

Part 3 Keeping Control

  • Chapter 14 - How Can I Do the Same Stuff Over and Over?

    • With while and do-while Loops
    • while We Repeat
    • Using while
    • Using do-while
    • In Review

  • Chapter 15 - Are There Other Loops?

    • The for Loop
    • for Repeat's Sake!
    • Working with for
    • In Review

  • Chapter 16 - What if I Want to Stop in the Middle of a Loop?

    • Use break and continue
    • Take a break
    • Let's continue Working
    • In Review

  • Chapter 17 - How Can I Test Lots of Values?

    • With the switch Statement
    • Making the switch
    • break and switch
    • Efficiency Considerations
    • In Review

  • Chapter 18 - How Else Can I Control Input and Output?

    • With Built-In I/O Functions
    • putchar() and getchar()
    • The Newline Consideration
    • A Little Faster: getch()
    • In Review

  • Chapter 19 - Can You Tell Me More About Strings?

    • C's Built-In Character and String Functions
    • Character-Testing Functions
    • Is the Case Correct?
    • Case-Changing Functions
    • String Functions
    • In Review

  • Chapter 20 - Can C Do My Math Homework?

    • The Built-In Numeric Functions Show You
    • Practicing Your Math
    • Doing More Conversions
    • Getting Into Trig and Other Really Hard Stuff
    • Getting Random
    • In Review

Part 4 C Programs and Lots of Data

  • Chapter 21 - How Does C Work with Lists?

    • Using Arrays
    • Reviewing Arrays
    • Putting Values in Arrays
    • We're Not Done Yet
    • In Review

  • Chapter 22 - How Can I Search for Data?

    • Step Through Arrays
    • Filling Arrays
    • Finders Keepers
    • In Review
    • Chapter 23 - How Can I Arrange and Alphabetize?
    • The Bubble Sort Does the Trick
    • Putting Your House in Order: Sorting
    • Faster Searches
    • In Review

  • Chapter 24 - What's the Point?

    • Using Pointers, You'll Find Out
    • Memory Addresses
    • Defining Pointer Variables
    • Using the Dereferencing *
    • In Review

  • Chapter 25 - How Are Arrays and Pointers Different?

    • They're the Same Thing in C
    • Array Names Are Pointers
    • Getting Down in the List
    • Characters and Pointers
    • Be Careful with Lengths
    • Arrays of Pointers
    • In Review

  • Chapter 26 - Where's More Memory?

    • Try the Heap
    • Thinking of the Heap
    • But WHY Do I Need the Heap?
    • How Do I Allocate the Heap?
    • If There's Not Enough Heap Memory
    • Freeing Heap Memory
    • Multiple Allocations
    • In Review

  • Chapter 27 - How Do I Store Lots of Data?

    • With Structures
    • Defining a Structure
    • Putting Data in Structure Variables
    • In Review

Part 5 Form Follows Functions

  • Chapter 28 - Can My Programs Save Stuff on Disk?

    • With Sequential Files
    • Disk Files
    • Opening a File
    • Using Sequential Files
    • In Review

  • Chapter 29 - Is There Another Way to Save Files?

    • Use Random Files
    • Opening Random Files
    • Moving Around in a File
    • In Review

  • Chapter 30 - How Can I Better Organize My Programs?

    • Using Functions
    • Form Follows C Functions
    • Local or Global?
    • In Review

  • Chapter 31 - How Do Functions Share Data?

    • By Passing Variables
    • Passing Arguments
    • Methods of Passing Arguments
    • In Review

  • Chapter 32 - How Can I Perfect My Functions?

    • Using Return Values and Prototypes
    • Returning Values
    • The Return Data Type
    • One Last Step: Prototype
    • Wrapping Things Up
    • In Review

  • Chapter A - Where Do I Go from Here?

  • Chapter B - Playing Around with C Blackjack

  • Chapter C - The ASCII Table

  • Index

Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Write a Review

and post it to your social network


Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews >

Absolute Beginner's Guide to C 4.1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 17 reviews.
madison_ More than 1 year ago
Old book, but still better than new publications. The best for beginners.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I am taking an introductory computer science course where this book is referenced and I've found it very helpful for common features of C since I did C++ but years ago. However, the chapter on headers and other pre-processing directives frequently makes reference to the wrong header file (eg. stdio.h when string.h is under discussion). While someone with even a limited background in C or C++ will get the point and make the correction, someone with no background - i.e. the person who could really learn from the chapter - may be confused. If you are a true absolute beginner, I would recommend this as one of the better introductions but would advise keeping Google open to run a quick search to find out what's going on when sample code doesn't compile as advertised.
Russell_Kirk More than 1 year ago
Mediocre, hard to imagine if this is your first time, need hands on exercises to internalize.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I found this book great for me. I have read other books on C before but none stood out with such clarity. A straight forward to the point book. If you plan on learning C, this book is required reading for a beginning programmer.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
markb More than 1 year ago
Absolute Beginner's Guide to C was my breaktrhrough publication to understanding the "C" Programming Language. It paid back immediate dividends at work and has opened my eyes to a deeper grasp of "C"! Thanks Greg!
Guest More than 1 year ago
This was a fantastic book to read...i enjoyed all the little notes and clues. I COULDNT PUT THE BOOK DOWN! I STRONGLY suggest you buy this book!
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book is wonderful. User friendly is the optimal phrase. I strongly recommend it for anyone who is seeking basic concepts of the C language. Mr. Perry's attention to the detail is incredible.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is the best book on C you will find. Be advised though, this book is intended for the complete newbie who knows very little/nothing of programming. The book is written extremly well and is easy to read. Through the reading there are little tidbits of information which help you to understand the concepts better. The best book of it's kind.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I read this book in less then 2 weeks. I did get a good grasp on some of the concepts but when you do not have some exercises to practice with, It kind of makes it hard to really know the concepts. It's like math, if u don't do the examples, you don't learn. Also the book is very general, you really can't master any thing with this book, but it's a good book to get into the feel of C
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is THE book to start on if you wanna learn C. Helps you understand alot of the difficult concepts. I guarantee this book will help you learn C!!!
Guest More than 1 year ago
I have been triying to learn C for a long time now and once my friend let me have this book when he bought it, it really started something. buy it. You have to be stupid not to learn from this book.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book's understandable summaries are perfect for the programmer begining C. Just read the average-of-one-page summary for each chapter (32 chapters), and if there's anything you want more detail on, just go back and I'm certain you'll find it FAST. There are no important concepts hidden deep within a paragraph! The author doesn't shy from the words 'always' and 'never'. This book is just like a 700 page book chopped in half! Even the code doesn't go on and on and on.... Well, you get the point. If you plan to get a job programming in C, this isn't for you. This is for the one-time class taker who is beginning, someone building a foundation for C++, or someone struggling in their C class. Don't give up-it's not too late! You'll understand pointers, methods, variables, etc. in no time!
Guest More than 1 year ago
I bought the book 1 day prior to it been stolen. Put the book down stepped 10 feet away and I guess the simplicity of it caught a readers eye they read it and they decided to keep it!!! I was mad but I went and got another one.