May 27

C question from Dan Garcia

Posted in Trivia      Comments Off on C question from Dan Garcia

Currently, I’m following Dan Garcia’s CS61C course (which is freely available online). On lesson 6, there’s an interesting puzzle (which, btw, I got it wrong – I’ll tell you why on the next post). The question is: which snippets prints always 5?

main() {
   int *a-ptr; *a-ptr = 5; printf(“%d”, *a-ptr);


main() {
  int *p, a = 5;
  p = &a; …
  /* code; a & p NEVER on LHS of = */
  printf(“%d”, a);


main() {
int *ptr;
ptr = (int *) malloc (sizeof(int));
*ptr = 5;
printf(“%d”, *ptr);

Option 2 says that there’s code between p = &a; and the printf line, but a and p are never on the left hand sign of an equals operation. With this data, which option (if any) do you think will always print 5?