Appendix B: Glossary of C and Programming Terms

Appendix B: Glossary of C++ and Programming Terms


A mechanism for including one source file into another.

Abstract class

A class defining an interface only. These are used as a base class. Declaring a member function pure virtual makes it’s class abstract.


The act of specifying a general interface hiding implementation details.


A systematic way of solving a problem.


A value that is passed to a function, also referred to as a parameter.


A variable that consists of a series of values of the same type, the same name, and that are contiguous in memory.

Base Class

A class from which another is derived, also called a parent class.

Binary Operators

Operators that operate on two arguments.


The built-in Boolean type. It stores true or false values.


Operator for explicit type conversion. This operator allows you to change the data type of a variable.


Character type; typically a single byte.


Standard istream operator for reading-in text from the keyboard.



A user-defined type. A class can have member functions, member data, member constants, and member types. Classes are templates for creating objects.


The actual programming commands that a programmer will write.


Member function with the same name as its class, used to initialize objects of its class. It is literally used to construct objects based on that class.


Standard ostream operator used to send output to the default display device, usually the monitor.

Default Constructor

Constructor requiring no arguments. Used for default initialization.

Derived Class

A class with one or more base classes. Also sometimes called a subclass or child class.


Member of a class used to clean-up before deleting an object. Its name is its class’s name prefixed by the negation symbol ~.


A user-defined type consisting of a set of named values


Any problem with a program. These can be divided into three categories: logic errors, syntax errors, and runtime errors.


Combination of operators and names producing a value, also called a statement.


An interruption to the normal flow of a program.


Processing data in a first-in, first-out format, such as in a queue.


Single-precision floating-point number.


A function or class explicitly granted access to members of a class by that class.


A group of one or more related expressions that are grouped under a common name as a discrete code block.


Statement selecting between two alternatives based on a condition.


The act of getting the public and protected members of a parent class.


Processing data on a last-in, first-out basis, such as in a stack.

long int

Integer of a size greater than or equal to the size of an int. Also simply referred to as a long.

Member Function

A function declared in the scope of a class.


Multiple Inheritance

The use of more than one immediate base class for a derived class.


A symbol that defines some operation such as addition, increment, and so on.

Operator Overloading

Having more than one operator with the same name in the same scope.


A variable that actually references the memory address of another variable.

Pure Virtual Function

Virtual function that must be overridden in a derived class. A pure virtual function, unlike a normal virtual function, causes the entire class that it is in to be abstract.


This is the process whereby a function calls itself. This technique is commonly used in a variety of algorithms.


Integer of a size less than or equal to the size of an int.


Combination of operators and names producing some value, also called an expression.


Pointer to the object for which a non-static member function is called.

Unary Operators

Operators that operate on a single argument.


A person who utilizes your software.


A place in memory set aside to hold data of a particular type.

C++ Programming Fundamentals
C++ Programming Fundamentals (Cyberrookies)
ISBN: 1584502371
EAN: 2147483647
Year: 2005
Pages: 197
Authors: Chuck Easttom © 2008-2017.
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