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Are Functions Core Concepts in Computer Programming?

Computer programming is a phrase that is frequently used, but few people actually understand its implications. The process of computer programming is difficult to understand for those who are not in the computer science field. Computer programming uses a code or language, which can be translated into different meanings once processed as a program. For example, the software used to calculate taxes or create simple web pages are product of skilled computer programming. Behind these software programs are scripts and codes that can have different meanings.

For many programming languages, functions are important and therefore a key concept to learn for those interested in software and computer programming. A function can also be referred to as a subroutine, procedure, or sub-query. How is a function important? For example, if a company or institution has a library of many programs, these programs can consist of millions of lines of source code. To save time and space, duplicating source code in multiple places should be avoided.

Why is duplication undesirable? If source code is duplicated in many places, it is needlessly copied and can cause problems for the programmer and troubleshooter down the line. If the source code is erroneous, the programmer or troubleshooter will have to correct the code in all the different places it appears. If the source code needs to be updated or improved to make the program run faster or perform more operations, it must be modified, improved, and updated in all the places it appears. If the source code needs to be removed and replaced with new code, it must be erased and replaced in every place it appears. This is time-consuming and can lead to more errors due to human intervention.

On the other hand, if functions are built to handle different programs, then only one or a few changes need to be made if there are errors or if the source code needs to be updated, modified, improved, or changed. You can think of the function as an umbrella that covers all the different programs beneath it, so you do not have to cover each program individually.

Having a single source code serving as the function is also advantageous when introducing a new program that uses the same source code. Because the source code is already available as an overall function or sub-program, there is no need to add the source code to the new program. You only need to find a way for the new program to interact with the source code.

These are just a few facts about functions in computer programming. For more information, read up on the latest computer programs, how different programs can interact with each other using an umbrella or overall scripts, and how different programs can be improved when using functions.

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