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weak typing

<programming> Strict enforcement of type rules but with well-defined exceptions or an explicit type-violation mechanism.

Weak typing is "friendlier" to the programmer than strong typing, but catches fewer errors at compile time.

C and C++ are weakly typed, as they automatically coerce many types e.g. ints and floats. E.g.

	 int a = 5;
	 float b = a;


They also allow ignore typedefs for the purposes of type comparison; for example the following is allowed, which would probably be disallowed in a strongly typed language:

	 typedef int Date;    /* Type to represent a date */
	 Date a = 12345;
	 int b = a;       /* What does the coder intend? */


C++ is stricter than C in its handling of enumerated types:

	 enum animal {CAT=0,DOG=2,ANT=3};
	 enum animal a = CAT;  /* NB The enum is optional in C++ */
	 enum animal b = 1;    /* This is a warning or error in C++ */


(2000-07-04)


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