In this chapter, we give an overview of what programming is exactly, how it has evolved, and how it has been used to develop games. We will start with the premise that a computer consists of a processing unit and memory. The first (very low-level) programming languages were called Assembler languages. These languages were difficult to use, also because each processor had its own Assembler language. Newer, machine-independent programming languages followed different paradigms. We make a distinction between declarative programming languages and functional programming languages. We also cover object-oriented programming languages such as C++, Java, and C#, which are part of the declarative paradigm. We then give an overview of different ways to translate code written in these languages into a program that can be executed by a computer. After that, we introduce game engines and how they are used in programs. We conclude the chapter with a brief overview of how code is designed, specified, and implemented.
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