Assignment statements play a crucial role in programming by enabling variables to hold different values at different times throughout a program’s execution. This is achieved by storing a value in a memory address indicated by the variable’s name. However, some programming languages such as strictly functional ones do not permit this kind of reassignment to avoid changes to non-local state and instead promote referential transparency.
The most commonly used notation for assignment statements is x = expr, which was popularized by languages like Fortran and C. However, there are other notations like x:= expr used in languages like Pascal. The utilized symbol can also be recognized as an operator that returns a value in some languages.
When an assignment statement is executed, the expression on the right-hand side is evaluated and applied to the variable on the left-hand side. If the left-hand side is a variable, then the value of the right-side is assigned to that variable. However, other simplifications are not made during this process.
- What are assignment statements in programming?
- What is the purpose of assignment statements?
- Why do some programming languages not permit reassignment?
Assignment statements store a value into a variable by setting and/or resetting the value in the storage location(s) indicated by a variable name.
The purpose of assignment statements is to permit a variable to have various values at various points over the course of its programming life and scope.
Some programming languages, primarily strictly functional ones, do not permit reassignment to avoid changes to non-local state and to promote referential transparency.
Overall, understanding how assignment statements work is important in programming because it allows variables to hold different values and ultimately helps in program execution.