assignment

<programming> Storing the value of an expression in a variable. This is commonly written in the form "v = e". In Algol the assignment operator was ":=" (pronounced "becomes") to avoid mathematicians qualms about writing statements like x = x+1.

Assignment is not allowed in functional languages, where an identifier always has the same value.

See also referential transparency, single assignment, zero assignment.

Last updated: 1996-08-19

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