What does the term mean?

A type of operator that can group input values together. These are similar to logical operators but only work with bits – the 1s and 0s of machine code).

OperatorExampleDescription
& (AND)ANDSets each bit to 1 if both bits are 1
| (OR)ORSets each bit to 1 if one of two bits is 1
^ (XOR)XORSets each bit to 1 if only one of two bits is 1
~ (NOT)NOTInverts all the bits
<< (Zero fill left shift)Zero fill left shiftShift left by pushing zeros in from the right and let the leftmost bits fall off
>> (Signed right shift)Signed right shiftShift right by pushing copies of the leftmost bit in from the left, and let the rightmost bits fall off

What does the term mean?

A class is a chunk of code that performs a certain function within your program.

In object-oriented programming a class is a template, or the building blocks, for an object.

If you had a class of dog it would contain everything that a dog has such as what type of tail it has, what colour fur it has etc., but the class itself would never actually be a dog – it just sets out the building blocks to make one.

The dog itself would be an object.

Another example is that you could have a class that deals with everything to do with making toast in a program that makes your breakfast.

This is not to be confused with a function.

What does the term mean?

Using multiple data sets to improve the accuracy of your results, or to expand the number of things you can compare. Aggregating data requires the data sets to have a single point in common, for example a date range. Also known as aggregating data.

What does the term mean?

A plain text method of storing data in a tabular way.

Cells within the table are separated by commas, and a new row is signified by a line break.

The first row in a CSV file can be the names of the columns but this is not necessary to include.

Although a comma is usually used, actually any character can be used to separate values, including spaces and tabs etc., hence CSV can also stand for ‘character-separated values’.

What does the term mean?

A way of annotating your code, perhaps so that you know what that code is for, or to tell others that there may be an issue with that piece of code that you have not yet overcome.

While comments are visible to you, the computer will ignore – skip over – them when running the code.

You can use comments where you want to write something down, without worrying that the computer will try to do something with it.

There are three different types of comment:

  • In-line – In-line means that you use the signifier for a comment on each line that you are writing.
  • Multi-line – Multiline comments usually have a signifier to start the comment, and one to end it.
  • Documentation – The documentation type will generate an XML file for you when you compile your program.

There are a few ways of writing a comment, depending on the programming language you are using:

In-line comments Multi-line comments Documentation comments
// this is a comment
/* This is
a comment
spanning
several lines /*
/// <summary>
/// A summary of this code
/// <remarks>
/// A longer comment describing how the code functions
// This is
// a comment
// spanning
// several lines
<!-- This is a comment -->

What does the term mean?

A type of operator which compares two input values, called operands.

Expressions using this type of operator always return one of two values: true or false.

For example, if you were to ask if the number 2, the same as the number 3, 2 = 3? This would return false.

If instead you were to ask if the number 2 is less than the number 3 2 < 3, this would return true.

In these cases: 2 and 3 are the operands, and = and < are the operators.

Although they vary in how they are written between languages, the comparison operators are roughly as follows:

OperatorExampleDescription
==1 == 2 returns falseare these values equal to one another
===2 === ‘2’ returns falseare these values equal to one another and do they have the same type
!=1 != 2 returns trueare these values not equal to one another
!==1 !== ‘1’ returns trueare these values not equal to one another and do they have a different type
>1 > 2 returns falseis the left value greater than the right value
<1 < 2 returns trueis the left value less than the right value
>=3 >= 2 returns trueis the left value greater than or equal to the right value
<=1 <= 2 returns trueis the left value less than or equal to the right value

In some languages there is another comparison operator known as a ternary operator which requires 2 operands and 2 statements. For example 1 > 2 ? "1 is more than 2" : "1 is less than or equal to 2". This will return ‘1 is less than or equal to 2’ but it will not evaluate the statement (1 > 2) itself.

What does the term mean?

Compiling is how your code is translated into a language that a computer can understand. Think of your code being written in French, but the computer can only understand English. A compiler does the job of translating your French into English.

What does the term mean?

These are quicker ways of writing binary operators where you update one of the values you are using.

OperatorUseDescription
+=x += 4x = x + 4
-=x -= 4x = x – 4
*=x *= 4x = x * 4
/=x / = 4x = x / 4
%=x %= 4x = x % 4

What does the term mean?

Where the computer only performs a task when one or more conditions are met. To put it another way, the task is conditional on some requirements being met.

These are also referred to as conditional expressions or conditional constructs.

An ‘if statement‘ is a conditional statement.