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Unformatted text preview: Safety and strong typing Safety One property that is sometimes looked for in a programming language is safety. There is some confusion as to what safety means, but here is a definition used in the year 2000 by an ad hoc committee that recommended that the Advanced Placement (AP) test in programming be based on the programming language Java: Safety: Any attempt to misinterpret data is caught at compiletime or generates a well- specified error at runtime. C and C++ are not safe. An array index operation b[k] in these languages may be allowed even though k is outside the range of the array. There is also no built-in protection against using pointer manipulation to access almost any part of memory. "Buffer overflow" akin to writing outside the boundary of an array is exploited by many computer viruses. Of course, a progammer can explicitly check for overflow, but the language does not require it....
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- Spring '08