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comp.lang.c FAQ list · Question 9.4

Q: Should I use symbolic names like TRUE and FALSE for Boolean constants, or plain 1 and 0?

A: It's your choice. Preprocessor macros like TRUE and FALSE (and, of course, NULL) are used for code readability, not because the underlying values might ever change. It's a matter of style, not correctness, whether to use symbolic names or raw 1/0 values. (See also questions 5.10 and 17.10.)

On the one hand, using a symbolic name like TRUE or FALSE reminds the reader that a Boolean value is involved. On the other hand, Boolean values and definitions can evidently be confusing, and some programmers feel that TRUE and FALSE macros only compound the confusion. (See also question 5.9.)

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