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So does learning C, or C++, help you learn the other?
Yes -- C++ is mostly a superset of C, so learning either helps you learn the other.
And what would be the advantage of knowing the same language as what the extension APIs are in?
The idea is that you first write your program in a comfortable, high-level, slow language (e.g. R or Perl) and then, if it's too slow, reimplement parts of it in a fast language, calling those parts from the high-level language.

In reply to Re^5: perl's long term place in bioinformatics? by educated_foo
in thread perl's long term place in bioinformatics? by tritan

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