Book Image

Learning D

By : Michael Parker
Book Image

Learning D

By: Michael Parker

Overview of this book

D is a modern programming language that is both powerful and efficient. It combines multiple paradigms in a way that opens up a whole new world of software design. It is used to develop both desktop and web applications, with future targets including mobile, and is available on multiple platforms. It is familiar to anyone with some experience in one or more of the C-family languages. However, hidden in the similarities are several differences that can be surprising when trying to apply common idioms from other languages. When learning D on your own, this can make it more time-consuming to master. In order to make the most of the language and become an idiomatic D programmer, it’s necessary to learn how to think in D. This book familiarizes you with D from the ground up, with a heavy focus on helping you to avoid surprises so that you can take your D knowledge to the next level more quickly and painlessly. Your journey begins with a taste of the language and the basics of compiling D programs with DMD, the reference D compiler developed by Digital Mars, and DUB, a community-developed build utility and package manager. You then set out on an exploration of major language features. This begins with the fundamentals of D, including built-in types, conditionals, loops and all of the basic building-blocks of a D program, followed by an examination of D’s object-oriented programming support. You’ll learn how these features differ from languages you may already be familiar with. Next up are D’s compile-time features, such as Compile-Time Function Evaluation and conditional compilation, then generic programming with templates. After that, you’ll learn the more advanced features of ranges and functional pipeline programming. To enhance your D experience, you are next taken on a tour of the D ecosystem and learn how to make D interact with C. Finally, you get a look at D web development using the vibe.d project and the book closes with some handy advice on where to go next.
Table of Contents (19 chapters)
Learning D
About the Author
About the Reviewers

Basic types

Most of D's basic data types will be familiar to C-family programmers. In this section, we're first going to look at what the basic data types are. Then we'll discuss a couple of features that are related not only to the basic types, but to all types.

The types

First up, D includes the special type void to mean no type. There is no such thing as a variable of type void. As in C, void is used to indicate that a function does not return a value. void pointers can be declared to represent pointers to any type.

Instances of the bool type are guaranteed to be eight bits in size and can hold one of two possible values: true and false. In any expression that expects a Boolean value, any zero value is converted to false and non-zero is converted to true. Conversely, in any expression that expects a numeric type, false and true are converted to 0 and 1. Variables of type bool are initialized to false by default.

D supports signed and unsigned versions of integral types in 8-, 16-, 32-, and...