Programming - Term Overview

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Programming is the act of organizing a sequence of steps ordered to follow to do a certain thing. This term can be used in many contexts, it's common to talk about programming when organizing an outing, vacations or the list of programs with their days and times of broadcast of television channels or the list of movies in a cinema.

In addition, in the field of computing, programming is the key element in the relationship between computers and users.

Computer programming

In the field of computing, programming refers to the action of creating programs or applications through the development of a source code, which is based on the set of instructions that the computer follows to execute a program.

Programming is what allows a computer to function and perform the tasks that the user requests.

Programming language

The programming language is a predesigned artificial language made up of signs, words and symbols that allows communication between the programmer and the computer.

The instructions that the computer follows for the execution of applications and programs are written in programming language and then they are translated into a machine language that can be interpreted and executed by the hardware of the equipment (physical part).

The source code is made up of lines of text that express in programming language the instructions that the computer must carry out. This code is created, designed, coded, maintained and debugged through programming.

There are different programming languages (Java, Pearl, Python) that use various programs in which the instructions are dumped. These languages ​​vary over time, expand and evolve.

What is programming for?

The main objective of programming is to define instructions so that a computer can execute systems, programs and applications that are efficient, accessible and friendly for the user.

Computer programs usually follow algorithms, which are the set of instructions organized and related to each other that allow the software of computer equipment to work .

History of programming

The beginnings of the development of computer programming coincide with the appearance of the first computers in the second half of the 20th century. The history of programming can be described through the development of different programming languages:

- Machine language: In this first period, very basic and limited machine languages ​​were used based on the binary system (use of the numbers 0 and 1 in different combinations) which is the language that computers recognize, so that even today all language is converted to this. It was replaced as it was a tedious and difficult form of programming.
- Assembly language: Later languages ​​began to emerge that made use of word codes. Simple words, mnemonics and abbreviations were used that had their correlation and were translated into machine code. Assembly language was incorporated because it was easier for the user to remember and perform than machine code.
- High-level language: Fortran, a programming language developed by IBM, emerged in the late 1950s, which gave rise to languages ​​based on much more complex sets of algorithms. These languages ​​were adapted to different computers and were translated by means of software into machine language.

Types of programming

- Structured programming: It seeks to improve and reduce the process time by using subroutines (subalgorithms within the main algorithm that solves a task).
- Modular programming: Divide programs into modules to work with them and solve problems more simply.
- Object-oriented programming: It uses objects (entities with characteristics, state and behavior) as fundamental elements for the search for solutions.

Programming elements

There are certain elements that are key when it comes to knowing or executing a programming language, among the most representative are:

- Reserved words: Words that within the language mean the execution of a specific instruction, so they cannot be used for any other purpose.
- Operators: Symbols that indicate the application of logical or mathematical operations.
- Variables: Data that may vary during the execution of the program.
- Constants: Data that doesn't vary during the execution of the program.
- Identifiers: Name given to the different variables to identify them.

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