“C” is the language’s entire name, and it does not “stand” for anything. C is the successor of
B, which was the successor of BCPL, which was the successor of CPL (Computer Programming
Language), an early programming language that was not implemented. Developed at Bell
Laboratories in the early 1970’s by Dennis Ritchie, C is a general-purpose, compiled language
that works well for microcomputers and is portable among many computers. It was originally
developed for writing system software. The first major program written in C was the Unix
operating system, and for many years C was considered to be inextricably linked with Unix.
Now, however, C is an important language independent of Unix. Today it is widely used for
writing applications, including word processing, spreadsheets, games, robotics, and graphics
programs. It is now considered a necessary language for programmers to know.