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Summary: The Art and Science of C is specifically designed to teach introductory programming using ANSI C. Roberts uses standard software engineering strategies---procedural abstraction, modular decomposition, and information hiding---from start to finish. What is unique about this book is Roberts' use of libraries. This method has two advantages. First, Roberts uses the libraries to emphasize the techniques of procedural abstraction, modular development, and information hidi ...show moreng, which are essential tools for the professional programmer. By emphasizing these concepts from the very beginning to the text, students develop the skills necessary to manage complexity when it arises.
Second, the text makes the material easier for students to learn. Early in the book, Roberts introduces several new libraries that hide details from the students until they are ready to use them. The libraries give the students the power to write useful programs that they could not yet develop on their own. Later chapters reveal the implementation of those libraries, thereby allowing students to appreciate the power of abstraction. With this text, Roberts provides you with everything you'll need to manage C's inherent complexity.
* Promotes solid programming skills by including discussion of the hows as well as the whys of programming.
* Includes helpful learning tools:
* Review questions covering key elements end each chapter.
* Exercises, over 175 in the text.
* Sample programs illustrate both the mechanics of programming and the use of good programming style.
* Buggy programs help student identity and correct bugs of their own.
Welcome! By picking up this book, you have taken a step into the world of computer science - a field of study that has grown from almost nothing half a century ago to become one of the most vibrant and active disciplines of our time.
Over that time, the computer has opened up extraordinary possibilities in almost every area of human endeavor. Business leaders today are able to manage global enterprises on an unprecedented scale because computers enable them to transfer information anywhere in a fraction of a second. Scientists can now solve problems that were beyond their reach until the computer made the necessary calculations possible. Filmmakers use computers to generate dramatic visual effects that are impossible to achieve without them. Doctors can determine much more accurately what is going on inside a patient because computers have enabled a massive transformation in the practice of medicine.
Computers are a profoundly empowering technology. The advances we have seen up to now are small compared to what we will see in the next century. Computers will play a major role in shaping that century, just as they have the last 50 years. Those of you who are students today will soon inherit the responsibility of guiding that progress. As you do so, knowing how to use computers can only help.
Like most skills that are worth knowing, learning how computers work and how to control their enormous power takes time. You will not understand it all at once. But you must start somewhere. Twenty-five centuries ago, the Chinese philosopher Lao-tzu observed that the longest journey begins with a single step. This book can be your beginning.
For many of you, however, the first step can be the hardest to take. Many students find computers overwhelming and imagine that computer science is beyond their reach. Learning the basics of programming, however, does not require advanced mathematics or a detailed understanding of electronics. What matters in programming is whether you can progress from the statement of a problem to its solution. To do so, you must be able to think logically. You must have the necessary discipline to express your logic in a form that the computer can understand. Perhaps most importantly, you must be able to see the task through to its completion without getting discouraged by difficulties and setbacks. If you stick with the process, you will discover that reaching the solution is so exhilarating that it more than makes up for any frustrations you encounter along the way.
This book is designed to teach you the fundamentals of programming and the basics of C, which is the dominant programming language in the computing industry today. It treats the whys of programming as well as the hows, to give you a feel for the programming process as a whole. It also includes several features that will help you focus on the essential points and avoid errors that slow you down. The next few pages summarize these features and explain how to use this book effectively as you begin your journey into the exciting world of computer science.
In 1991-92, Stanford decided to restructure its introductory computer science curriculum to use ANSI C instead of Pascal. We chose to adopt ANSI C in our introductory courses for the following reasons:
Students demanded a more practical language. Future employers want students to have more direct experience with the tools industry uses, which today are principally C and C++. With few employment opportunities listed for Pascal programmers in the newspaper employment section, our students began to question the relevance of their education.
Our Pascal-based curriculum taught students to program in a language that they would never again use. We discovered that many of those students, when they abandoned Pascal for more modern languages, often forgot everything they had learned about programming style and the discipline of software engineering. Having now taught these skills in the context of a language that the students continue to use, we have found that they end up writing much better programs.
Many of our advanced computer science courses, particularly in the systems area, require students to program in C. Working with C from the beginning gives students much more experience by the time they reach the advanced courses.
Learning C early paves the way to learning C++ and the object-oriented paradigm. Because our students have a strong background in C programming after their first year of study, we have been able to offer our course on object-oriented system design much earlier in the curriculum.
C makes it possible to cover several important topics, such as modular development and abstract data types, that are hard to teach in a Pascal environment.
In the last five years, C has made significant headway toward replacing Fortran as the lingua franca of programming for the engineering sciences.
Given our experience over the last three years, I am convinced that the choice was a good one and that our program is stronger because of the change. At the same time, it is important to recognize that teaching C in the first programming course is not always easy. C was designed for programmers, not introductory students. Many of its features make sense only when understood in terms of a larger conceptual framework that new students do not recognize. In many respects, C is a complex language. To teach it at the introductory level, we must find a way to control its complexity.
One of the central goals of this text is to enable teachers to manage C's inherent complexity. Managing complexity, however, is precisely what we do as programmers. When we are faced with a problem that is too complex for immediate solution, we divide it into smaller pieces and consider each one independently. Moreover, when the complexity of one of those pieces crosses a certain threshold, it makes sense to isolate that complexity by defining a separate abstraction that has a simple interface. The interface protects clients from the underlying details of the abstraction, thereby simplifying the conceptual structure.
The same approach works for teaching programming. To make the material easier for students to learn, this text adopts a library-based approach that emphasizes the principle of abstraction. The essential character of that approach is reflected in the following two features that set this book apart from other introductory texts:
In 1992, I attempted to teach the introductory course using only the ANSI libraries. The results were not encouraging. Each new topic required that the student understand so much about the rest of C that there was no effective way to present the material. For example, students had to understand the mechanics of arrays, pointers, and allocation before they could use string data in any interesting way, even though string manipulation is simpler conceptually. My best students managed to understand what was going on by the end of the quarter. Most, however, did not. Since we introduced the library-based approach in early 1993, students have assimilated the material more easily and learned much more about computer science.
The library interfaces and associated implementations used in this text are reprinted in Appendix B, which also gives instructions for obtaining the source code electronically through anonymous FTP (File Transfer Protocol).
This book presents topics in the same order as Stanford's introductory course, except for the material in Chapter 17, which we cover in the second course. Depending on your audience and the goals of your course, you may want to vary the order of presentation. The following notes provide an overview of the chapters and indicate some of the more important dependencies.
Chapter 1 traces the history of computing and describes the programming process. The chapter requires no programming per se but provides the contextual background for the rest of the text.
I have designed Chapters 2 and 3 for students with little or no background in programming. These chapters are conceptual in their approach and focus on problem solving rather than on the details of the C language. When new students are faced with detailed rules of syntax and structure, they concentrate on learning the rules instead of the underlying concepts, which are vastly more important at this stage. If your students already know some programming, you could move much more quickly through this material.
Chapters 2 and 3 are informal in their approach and concentrate on developing the student's problem-solving skills. Along the way they introduce several basic statement forms and control structures, but only as idioms to accomplish a specific task. Chapter 4 adds formal structure to this topic by describing each statement form in turn, detailing its syntax and semantics. The chapter also includes an extensive discussion of Boolean data.
Chapter 5 introduces functions and procedures. It begins with simple examples of functions and then continues with increasingly sophisticated examples. The mechanics of parameter passing are discussed in a separate section that includes many diagrams to help students follow the flow of data from one function to another. The chapter ends with a significant programming example that illustrates the concept of stepwise refinement.
The algorithmic concepts presented in Chapter 6 are fundamental to computer science but may not be required for all students. If your audience consists of engineers or potential computer science majors, the material will prove extremely valuable. For less technical audiences, however, you can eliminate much of this material without disturbing the flow of the presentation.
I have found that integrating graphics in the introductory course is a great way to increase student interest in the material. Chapter 7 exists for that reason. At this state, students have learned the mechanics of functions but have no burning need to write them. Letting students draw complex pictures on the screen gives them that incentive. The graphics library is implemented for several of the major programming environments and can therefore be used in most institutions.
Chapter 8 has two themes, which are in some sense separable. The first part of the chapter discusses design criteria for interfaces and is essential for anyone who needs to understand how modern programming works. The second part of the chapter applies those principles to build a random number library. The random.h interface itself is less important than the general principles, although use of the random number library is required for a few of the exercises later in the text.
Chapter 9 introduces strings as an abstract type and represents to a certain extent, the cornerstone of the library-based approach. By using a dynamic string library, students can easily write programs that perform sophisticated string manipulation, even though they do not yet understand the underlying representation, which is covered in Chapter 14. Introducing strings at this point in the presentation enables students to write much more exciting programs than they could otherwise.
On a first reading, it is easy to miss the purpose of Chapter 10, which appears to be an extension of the discussion of strings begun in Chapter 9. The fundamental value of Chapter 10 does not lie in the Pig Latin program, which is more fun than it is practical. The entire reason for the example is that it provides them motivation to build the scanner interface used to separate words on the input line. The scanner module proves its usefulness over and over again, not only in the first course but in subsequent courses as well. It is the most practical tool students create in the course and therefore serves as a compelling example of the value of modularity.
Chapters 11 through 16 introduce the fundamental compound structures - arrays, pointers, files, and records - in an order that has worked well in practice. Because the base language is C, it is important to present pointers as soon as possible after introducing arrays so that you can emphasize the connections between them. Moreover, having established these concepts, it is then possible in Chapter 14 to consider string data more closely, thereby revealing the underlying representation that was concealed by the abstract definition. Chapter 16 integrates the fundamental data structures with the construction of a data-driven teaching machine, which is the most sophisticated example of programming presented in the text.
Chapter 17 includes three important topics that often appear in the first programming course: recursion, abstract data types, and analysis of algorithms. At Stanford, which is on the quarter system, we teach all these topics in the second course. I strongly recommend that you do so early enough to allow students time to assimilate the material. One possibility is to discuss recursive functions immediately after Chapter 5 and recursive algorithms after Chapter 6. Another approach is to cover recursion and analysis of algorithms together at the end of Chapter 12.
The Instructor's Manual contains supplemental materials including a course syllabus, suggestions for lecture design, sample assignments and examinations, and solutions to all programming exercises. In addition to the printed manual, instructors who adopt this text can retrieve electronic copies of solution sets and related materials. For details on obtaining solutions, please contact your local Addison-Wesley representative. All other supplemental material is available on-line. For explicit instructions see Appendix B.
The text has come a long way from it initial stages as class notes, in large measure because of suggestions from people who have worked with the text in one capacity or another. I am particularly grateful to the Stanford lecturers - Jon Becker, Katie Capps, Stephen Clausing, Todd Feldman, Allison Hansen, Margaret Johnson, Jim Kent, Andrew Kosoresow, Mehran Sahami, and Julie Zelenski - who have taught this material in 14 different sections of the introductory course over the past three years. I am also indebted to all the section leaders and teaching assistants as well as the coordinators of the student-teaching program - Felix Baker, John Lilly, Sandy Nguyen, Bryan Rollins, and Scott Wiltamuth - who provided much needed logistical support.
Many of the best ideas for the text came from a seminar on teaching introductory computer science that I conducted beginning in 1992-93. It provided a forum for thrashing out the hard issues and made a significant difference in the text. I want to thank everyone who participated: Perry Arnold, Jon Becker, Tom Bogart, Karl Brown, Bryan Busse, Katie Capps, Peter Chang, Scott Cohen, Stacey Doerr, Jeff Forbes, Stephen Freund, Jon Goldberg, Tague Griffith, Matt Harad, Lindsay Lack, Christine Lee, Tricia Lee, John Lilly, Albert Lin, Mara Mather, Hugh McGuire, Jeffrey Oldham, David O'Keefe, Bryan Rollins, Samir Saxena, Nikhyl Singhal, Eric Tucker, Garner Weng, Howard Wong-Toi, and John Yong.
I also want to thank all the students who have used and critiqued the draft version of the text: Adjo Amekudzi, Eric Anderson, Andrew Arnold, Kevin Berk, Kevin Carbajal, Ajit Chaudhari, Alida Cheung, Hye-won Choi, Elisabeth Christensen, Ralph Davis, Joel Firehammer, Peter Frelinghuysen, Trevor Gattis, Teddy Harris, Heather Heal, Enoch Huang, Ann Lee, Ted Lee, Daphne Lichtensztajn, Lisa Maddock, Allan Marcus, Brad McGoran, Forrest Melton, Adrienne Osborn, Masatoshi Saito, Anne Stern, Ricardo Urena, and Nichole Wilson.
In 1993-94, several faculty members at other universities tested this material in draft from and made several valuable suggestions. I especially want to thank Margo Seltzer at Harvard University, Rob Langsner at the University of Nevada (Reno), Richard Chang at the University of Maryland (Baltimore County), Jane Turk at La Salle University, and Kim Kihlstrom at Westmont College for helping to refine the text from its early stages.
I am also indebted to my reviewers:
Utah State University
Jeffrey A. Slomka
Southwest Texas State University
Harry R. Lewis
SUNY - Stony Brook
Rochester Institute of Technology
John A. Trono
St. Michaels' College
Robert G. Plantz
Sonoma State University
Wayne State University
In addition, I have received useful advice along the way from several friends and colleagues, including Josh Barnes, Pavel Curtis, Kathleen Kells, James Finn, and Steve Lewin-Berlin.
The final version of this text owes much to my editors at Addison-Wesley, who have been helpful throughout the process,. In particular, I thank Lynne Doran Cote, Sue Gleason, Peter Gordon, Laura Michaels, Jim Rigney, Karen Stone, and Amy Willcutt for all their work. And I am extremely fortunate to have Lauren Rusk as both my developmental editor and my partner; without her, nothing would ever come out as well as it should.
Roberts, Eric S. : Stanford University
Eric S. Roberts is an associate professor of computer science at Stanford University and the department's associate chair for educational affairs. After receiving his Ph.D. in applied mathematics from Harvard University in 1980, Roberts founded and chaired the computer science department at Wellesley College. He then worked for five years as a researcher for Digital Equipment Corporation's System Research Center in Palo Alto, California. He is also the author of Thinking Recursively along with numerous technical publications. A highly rated teacher, Roberts received the Bing Award for excellence in undergraduate teaching in 1993.
Chapter 1: Introduction
A Brief History of Computing
What is Computer Science?
A Brief Tour of Computer Hardware
Programming Languages and Compilation
Programming Errors and Debugging
The Importance of Software Engineering
Some Thoughts on the C Programming Language
Part 1 --- The Basics Of C Programming
Chapter 2. Learning by Example
The "Hello World" Program
A Program to Add Two Numbers
Perspectives on the Programming Process
Chapter 3. Problem Solving
Programming Idioms and Paradigms
Solving Problems on a Larger Scale
An Exercise in Debugging
Crafting a Program
Chapter 4. Statement Forms
The if Statement
The switch Statement
The while Statement
The for Statement
Chapter 5. Functions
Using Library Functions
Writing Your Own Functions
Mechanics of the Function-Calling Process
Chapter 6. Algorithms
Testing for Primality
Computing the Greatest Common Divisor
Specifying the Size of Numeric Types
Part II --- Libraries And Modular Development
Chapter 7. Libraries and Interfaces: A Simple Graphics Library
The Concept of an Interface
An Introduction to the Graphics Library
Building Your Own Tools
Solving a Larger Problem
Chapter 8. Designing Interfaces: A Random Number Library
Generating Random Numbers by Computer
Saving Tools in Libraries
Evaluating the Design of random.h Interface
Using the Random-Number Package
Chapter 9. Strings and Characters
The Principle of Enumeration
Strings as Abstract Data
The strlib.h Interface
Chapter 10. Modular Development
Pig Latin---A Case Study in Modular Development
Maintaining Internal State within a Module
Implementing a Scanner Abstraction
Part III --- Compound Data Types
Chapter 11. Arrays
Introduction to Arrays
Internal Representation of Data
Passing Arrays as Parameters
Using Arrays for Tabulation
Static Initialization of Arrays
Chapter 12. Searching and Sorting
Chapter 13. Pointers
Using Addresses as Data Values
Pointer Manipulation in C
Passing Parameters by Reference
Pointers and Arrays
Chapter 14. Strings Revisited
Conceptual Representations of the Type string
The ANSI String Library
Implementing the strlib.h Library
Chapter 15. Files
Using Files in C
Chapter 16. Records
The Concept of the Data Record
Using Records in C
Combining Records and Arrays
Pointers to Records
Building a Database of Records
Designing a Record-Based Application
Chapter 17. Looking Ahead
Abstract Data Types
Analysis of Algorithms
Appendix A. Summary of C Syntax and Structure
Appendix B. Library Sources
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