Arrays and Pointers

  • Arrays in C are just like arrays in ASM. They're a contigous sequence of memory starting at some address.
  • Array variables store the address of the start of the array.
  • C knows how big the type stored in array is.
  • For arrays in ASM, we had to manually calculate the byte offsets.
  • An array of words in C would be xs[0], xs[1], etc.
  • Pointers are variables that store memory addresses with an associated type so "int*" (int pointer) is the address of an int.
  • C lets you do arthmetic with pointers.
    • If you add one to an int pointer, it steps to the next int-sized chunk of memory. So if p is a pointer to a 4 byte int, then (p + 1) is the address increased by 4 bytes.
    • Show sizeof: char, short, int, long, float, double, char*, long*
  • Array varibles and pointers are the same thing with different notation.
  • If pp is a pointer and aa is an array, both of the same type pointing to the same address, then pp[3] and *(pp + 3) are the same thing.
  • Strangely, pp[ii] and ii[pp] are the same thing too.
    • Why?