C With Excellence: Programming Proverbs by Henry F. Ledgard

By Henry F. Ledgard

Booklet by means of Ledgard, Henry F., Tauer, John

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Interpreting -1 as an unsigned int yields a big positive number, making the clause false. This bug occurs under ANSI C, and under K&R C if sizeof() had an unsigned return type in a given implementation. It can be fixed by putting an int cast immediately before the TOTAL_ELEMENTS: if (d <= (int) TOTAL_ELEMENTS - 2) Handy Heuristic Advice on Unsigned Types Avoid unnecessary complexity by minimizing your use of unsigned types. , "age" or "national_debt"). Use a signed type like int and you won't have to worry about boundary cases in the detailed rules for promoting mixed types.

Return a pointer to a string literal. Example: 2. char *func() { return "Only works for simple strings"; } This is the simplest solution, but it can't be used if you need to calculate the string contents, as in this case. You can also get into trouble if string literals are stored in read-only memory, and the caller later tries to overwrite it. 3. Use a globally declared array. Example: 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. } char *func() { ... my_global_array[i] = ... return my_global_array; This works for strings that you need to build up, and is still simple and easy to use.

Wrong! Handy Heuristic Lint Early, Lint Often Lint is your software conscience. It tells you when you are doing bad things. Always use lint. Listen to your conscience. Separating lint out from the compiler as an independent program was a big mistake that people are only now coming to terms with. It's true that it made the compiler smaller and more focused, but it was at the grievous cost of allowing bugs and dubious code idioms to lurk unnoticed. Many, perhaps most, programmers do not use lint by default after each and every compilation.

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