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Pseudo-code is best understood by looking at examples.

Each example below demonstrates one of the control structures used in algorithms: sequential operations, conditional operations, and iterative operations. We also list all variables used at the end of the pseudo-code. Example #1 - Computing Sales Tax : Pseudo-code the task of computing the final price of an item after figuring in sales tax. Note the three types of instructions: input (get), process/calculate (=) and output (display) 1. 2. 3. 4 5. 6. get price of item get sales tax rate sales tax = price of time times sales tax rate final prince = price of item plus sales tax display final price halt

Variables: price of item, sales tax rate, sales tax, final price Note that the operations are numbered and each operation is unambiguous and effectively computable. We also extract and list all variables used in our pseudo-code. This will be useful when translating pseudo-code into a programming language

Example #2 - Computing Weekly Wages: Gross pay depends on the pay rate and the number of hours worked per week. However, if you work more than 40 hours, you get paid time-and-a-half for all hours worked over 40. Pseudo-code the task of computing gross pay given pay rate and hours worked. 1. 2. 3. get hours worked get pay rate if hours worked 40 then 3.1 gross pay = pay rate times hours worked 4. else 4.1 gross pay = pay rate times 40 plus 1.5 times pay rate times (hours worked minus 40) 5. display gross pay 6. halt variables: hours worked, ray rate, gross pay This example introduces the conditional control structure. On the basis of the true/false question asked in line 3, we execute line 3.1 if the answer is True; otherwise if the answer is False we execute the lines subordinate to line 4 (i.e. line 4.1). In both cases we resume the pseudo-code at line 5.

Example #3 - Computing a Quiz Average: Pseudo-code a routine to calculate your quiz average. 1. 2. 3. 4. get number of quizzes sum = 0 count = 0 while count < number of quizzes 4.1 get quiz grade 4.2 sum = sum + quiz grade 4.3 count = count + 1 average = sum / number of quizzes display average halt variables: number of quizzes, sum ,count, quiz grade, average This example introduces an iterative control statement. As long as the condition in line 4 is True, we execute the subordinate operations 4.1 - 4.3. When the condition becomes False, we resume the pseudo-code at line 5. This is an example of a top-test or while do iterative control structure. There is also a bottom-test or repeat until iterative control structure which executes a block of statements until the condition tested at the end of the block is False.

5. 6. 7.

Pseudo-code is one important step in the process of writing a program.

Pseudo-code Language Constructions : A Summary Computation/Assignment set the value of "variable" to :"arithmetic expression" or "variable" equals "expression" or "variable" = "expression" Input/Output get "variable", "variable", ... display "variable", "variable", ... Conditional (dot notation used for numbering subordinate statements) 6. if "condition" 6.1 (subordinate) statement 1 6.2 etc ...


else 7.1 7.2

(subordinate) statement 2 etc ...

Iterative (dot notation used for numbering subordinate statements) 9. while "condition" 9.1 (subordinate) statement 1 9.2 etc ...