C++ (said C plus plus) is an object-oriented computer language created by the computer scientist Bjorne Stroustrop as part of the evolution of the C family of languages. It was developed as a cross-platform improvement of C to provide developers with a higher degree of control over memory and system resources.
Some call C++ “C with classes” because it introduces object-oriented programming principles, including the use of defined classes, to the C programming language framework. Over time, C++ has remained a very useful language not only in computer programming itself, but in teaching new programmers about how object-oriented programming works.
However, it does not only support object-oriented, but also procedural and functional. Thanks to its high flexibility and scalability, C++ can be used to develop a broad range of software, applications, browsers, Graphical User Interfaces (GUIs), operating systems, and games.
Today C++ is still very appreciated for its notable portability which allows developers to create programs that can run on different operating systems or platforms very easily. Despite being a high-level language, since C++ is still close to C it can be used for low-level manipulation due to its close relation with machine language.
C and C++ are still two of the most popular programming languages out there. The syntax and concepts of C, especially, has stood the test of time, and you can see them being carried on to other popular programming languages, even the modern ones, such as Go.
Even if you are going to build web applications or fancy web front-end components for the rest of your life, learning C will help you understand how software and hardware actually interact. Besides, C and C++ are everywhere. When you are searching for a job there are so many offers with C and C++.
Most operating system kernels are written in C, including but not limited to Windows, Linux, Mac, iOS, Android and so on. Modern browsers are also written in C/C++. like Chrome, Firefox etc.
Modern game engines are written in C/C++, like Unity3D, Unreal Engine, cocos2d-x etc.
As mentioned above, programming languages compilers and interpreters are implemented in C/C++ too.
While C and C++ have their similarities, they are two different programming languages and should be viewed as such. Even today, some 55 years following C’s creation, there are still distinct use cases for both.
To answer the question of whether you should learn C or C++, it’s important to first consider the type of program to which you want to apply your newfound knowledge. Usually C is used for operating systems, embedded devices and kernels and drivers.
On the other hand C++ is used for gaming, design, graphics and web browsers. Compared to C, C++ has significantly more libraries and functions to use. If you’re working with complex software, C++ is a better fit because you have more libraries to rely on.
Thinking practically, having knowledge of C++ is often a requirement for a variety of programming roles. Think of all the big companies listed earlier whose platforms are based on C++!
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