Polymorphic Data Structures in C/Glossary
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- The location in memory where a variable is stored.
- Address-of Operator
- The ampersand (&), used to reference a variable's address instead of its value.
- A variable passed to a function. The term argument is generally reserved for variables passed to main() at runtime, usually from the command line interface; see parameter.
- Dereference Operator
- The asterisk (*), used to access the value that a pointer points to as opposed to the pointer itself.
- Dereference-Member Operator
- A hyphen, followed by a greater-than sign (->), used to access the members of a union or structure through a pointer to that construct.
- Global Variable
- A variable declared independently of a function. Global variables are accessible anywhere in a program.
- Local Variable
- A variable declared in a function's definition. Local variables can only be used in the function that declared them.
- Member Operator
- The period (.), used to access members of a union or structure.
- An argument passed to a function for processing. Parameters are not changed in the calling function, but rather they are copied and stored locally in the called function's runtime stack.
- A variable that stores the address of another variable, eg. a variable that "points" to a value.
- Static Variable
- A variable declared inside a function. Static variables can only be used in the function that declared them.
- A sequence of characters terminated with a null byte. Represented in C as an array of chars, where the length is at least ( string_length + 1 ) to account for the null byte.
- See variable type.
- A symbolic name given to a value with a known or unknown quantity. Variables always have type.
- Variable Type
- The way that the compiler interprets the bits stored at a variable, eg. what kind of data is stored and referenced by a variable.