Cours 1.1. History of C programming language


C is a computer programming language. It has been named after its predecessor, the B language developed in 1969 by Kenneth Thompson. In 1972, as part of the development of the UNIX system, Kenneth Thompson and Dennis Ritchie developped a new version of the B language, logically named C. I will not go into the details of the language since this is the subject of the following of this course. Just remember that C is a low-level language, it allows significant control over the machine, in particular in terms of memory allocation thanks to pointers. C is a language used for programming of applications, embedded systems, compilers or even operating systems.

C creators, Ken Thompson and Dennis Ritchie in 1973

C quickly became a very popular language. Although it is difficult to analyze the underlying reasons for the democratization of one language rather than another, we can note the following facts that are likely related to the success of C.

The following video shows how C programming language is popular over years:


Since the creation of C, other programming languages have become more popular. Depending on the task or the machine on which the code will run, some languages are more suited than others. But despite its age, C remains a very widely used language and its learning the best investment of the future developer. It is still very widely used in systems embedded or under Linux. Above all, many modern languages use the syntax and logic of C, like for example the C++, the C#, Java, PHP, JavaScript, Objective C, etc.

Learning programming in C is essential because its mastery allows the developer to adapt very quickly to other languages. The C is, in a way, the Latin of programming languages, without being an extinct language!


When C programming language was created?

Check Well done! C was created during the year 1970. Try again...

Who developed the C programming language?

Check Well done! The C is the work of Dennis Ritchie and Kenneth Thompson who worked at Bell Labs. Try again...

What has become C nowadays?

Check Well done! C remains the benchmark for syntax and programming logic. Try again...

What are the technical advantages of C?

Check Well done! C is a low-level and versatile open programming language. Try again...

See also

Last update : 10/26/2021