C is a general-purpose, high-level programming language. Created at Bell Labs in the 1970s, its developers first used it to write programs for the Unix operating system. C is very efficient at using a computer's memory. It also gives programmers more direct access to a computer's hardware than other high-level languages. For those reasons, it is now widely used to write operating system kernels and device drivers.
C is an early example of a structured programming language, which divides a larger program into smaller modules or functions. Structured languages are easier to manage and reduce the complexity of the program's source code. It is also a compiled compiled language that requires a program's source code to be compiled into machine language before it can run.