You are previewing Code Complete, Second Edition.

Code Complete, Second Edition

Cover of Code Complete, Second Edition by Steve McConnell Published by Microsoft Press

Named Constants

A named constant is like a variable except that you can't change the constant's value once you've assigned it. Named constants enable you to refer to fixed quantities, such as the maximum number of employees, by a name rather than a number— MAXIMUM_EMPLOYEES rather than 1000, for instance.

Using a named constant is a way of "parameterizing" your program—putting an aspect of your program that might change into a parameter that you can change in one place rather than having to make changes throughout the program. If you have ever declared an array to be as big as you think it will ever need to be and then run out of space because it wasn't big enough, you can appreciate the value of named constants.

When an array size changes, you ...

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