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Computer programming Computer programming (often shortened to programming or coding) is the process o f writing, testing, and maintaining the

source code of computer programs. The source code is written in a programming language. This code may be a modification of existing source or something completely new. The process of writing source code requires expertise in many different subjects , including knowledge of the application domain and algorithms to implement the desired behavior. Within software engineering, programming (the implementation) is regarded as one phase in a software development process. In some specialist applications or extreme situations a program may be written o r modified (known as patching) by directly storing the numeric values of the mac hine code instructions to be executed into memory. There is an ongoing debate on the extent to which the writing of programs is an art, a craft or an engineering discipline.[1] Another ongoing debate is the extent to which the programming language used in w riting programs affects the form that the final program takes. This debate is analogous to that surrounding the Sapir Whorf hypothesis in lingu istics. Programmers Computer programmers are those who write computer software. Their job usually involves: Requirements analysis, Specification, Software archi tecture, Coding, Compilation, Software testing, Documentation, Integration, Main tenance. Programming languages Different programming languages support different styles of programming (called programming paradigms). The choice of language used may be an individual's choice or may be dictated by company policy. Ideally the programming language best suited for the task at hand will be select ed. Trade-offs from this ideal involve finding enough programmers, who know the lang uage, to build a team, the availability of compilers for that language, and the efficiency with which programs written in a given language execute. History of programming The earliest programmable machine (that is, a machine that can adjust its capabi lities based upon changing its "program") can be said to be the Jacquard Loom, w hich was developed in 1801. The machine used a series of pasteboard cards with holes punched in them. The hole pattern represented the pattern that the loom had to follow in weaving cloth. The loom could produce entirely different weaves using different sets of cards. This innovation was later refined by Herman Hollerith of IBM in the development of the famous IBM punch card. These were used with a variety of machines called unit record equipment to perfo rm data processing tasks. The unit record equipment were programmed by changing the wiring of plug-boards. Early computers used similar programming methods. The invention of the Von Neumann architecture allowed programs to be stored in c omputer memory. Early programs had to be painstakingly crafted using the instructions of the par ticular machine, often in binary notation.

Every model of computer would be likely to need different instructions to do the same task. Later assembly languages were developed that let the programmer specify each ins truction in a text format, entering abbreviations for each operation code instea d of a number and specifying addresses in symbolic form (e.g. ADD X, TOTAL). In 1954 Fortran, the first higher level programming language, was invented. This allowed programmers to specify calculations by entering a formula directly (e.g. Y = X*2 + 5*X + 9). The program text, or source, was converted into machine instructions using a spe cial program called a compiler. Many other languages were developed, including ones for commercial programming, such as COBOL. Programs were mostly still entered using punch cards or paper tape. (See computer programming in the punch card era). In the mid-1970s, mass storage devices and computer terminals became inexpensive enough so programs could be created by typing directly into the computers. Text editors were developed that allowed changes and corrections to be made much more easily than with punch cards. As time has progressed computers have made giant leaps in the area of processing power. This has brought about newer programming languages that are more abstracted from the underlying hardware. Although these more abstracted languages require additional overhead, in most ca ses the huge increase in speed of modern computers has brought about little perf ormance decrease compared to earlier counterparts. The benefits of these more abstracted languages is that they allow both an easie r learning curve for people less familiar with the older lower-level programming languages, and they also allow a more experienced programmer to develop simple applications quickly. Despite these benefits, large complicated programs, and programs that are more d ependent on speed still require the faster and relatively lower-level languages with todays hardware. (The same concerns were raised about the original Fortran language.) Throughout the second half of the twentieth century, programming was an attracti ve career in most developed countries. Some forms of programming have been increasingly subject to offshore outsourcing (importing software and services from other countries, usually at a lower wage) , making programming career decisions in developed countries more complicated, w hile increasing economic opportunities in less developed areas. It is unclear how far this trend will continue and how deeply it will impact pro grammer wages and opportunities. Despite the "outsourcing trend" it can be argued that some of the richest person s on the globe are programmers by profession. Examples: Bill Gates (Microsoft), Larry Ellison (Oracle), Larry Page (Google), H asso Plattner (SAP) and so on. Programming is clearly a leading-edge craftsmanship that continues to reward its practitioners both in countries such as India and developed countries like the USA or Germany. Modern Programming Methodologies The first step in every software development project should be requirements anal ysis, followed by modeling, implementation and failure elimination (debugging). There exist a lot of differing approaches for each of those tasks; with the most popular modeling technique being Object-Oriented Analysis and Design (OOAD) and Model-Driven Architecture (MDA). The Unified Modeling language (UML) is a notation used for OOAD. A similar technique used for database design is Entity-Relationship Modeling (ER

Modeling). Implementation techniques include imperative languages (object-oriented or proce dural), functional languages and logic languages. Debugging is most often done with IDEs like Visual Studio, and Eclipse. Separate debuggers like gdb are also used. Modern Languages The most popular programming languages in the 21st century are C, C++, C#, Cobol , Fortran, Java, PHP and Python. Many languages have evolved from C, such as C++, C#, and Java. Java, C# and Python are popular because programs written in them are executed in a virtual machine, avoiding many of the problems of lower-level languages such as C, C++ or Assembler, such as buffer overruns and invalid pointers. However, most PC desktop applications such as word processors or image manipulat ion programs are written in more runtime and memory efficient languages like C, C++, and Delphi. Operating systems are almost exclusively written in low-level programming langua ges like C, C++, or Assembler, since speed is necessary in components like conte xt switching, process and thread management, and memory management. Scientific applications are often implemented in Fortran because very efficient optimization (using optimizing Compilers) is possible for arithmetic. Cobol is still very strong in the corporate data center, mainly on large Mainfra me computers. PHP and Java excel in database-oriented applications which are often delivered o ver the internet or corporate intranets. Python, while being a general purpose programming language, is mostly used in sy stem administration and web programming. Debugging Debugging is a very important task for every programmer, because an erroneous pr ogram is often useless. Languages like C++ and Assembler are very challenging even to expert programmers because of failure modes like Buffer overruns, bad pointers or uninitialized me mory. A buffer overrun can damage adjacent memory regions and cause a failure in a tot ally different program line. Because of those memory issues tools like Valgrind, Purify or Boundschecker are virtually a necessity for modern software development in the C++ language. Languages such as Java, PHP and Python protect the programmer from most of these runtime failure modes, but this comes at the price of a dramatically lower exec ution speed of the resulting program.