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Guile's application programming interface (API) makes functionality available that an application developer can use in either C or Scheme programming. The interface consists of elements that may be macros, functions or variables in C, and procedures, variables, syntax or other types of object in Scheme. Broadly speaking, the interface as a whole can be divided into three groups.
Functions/procedures in the first group are often known as
primitives, subrs or builtins. An example is the
assq Scheme procedure, which is also available as
Elements in the second and third groups exist because they provide
additional language-specific benefits in either Scheme or C. Examples
are the C macro
SCM_CONSP, which is faster and more convenient in
C programming than the primitive
scm_pair_p, and the
make-object-property, which provides a
more convenient property handling interface in Scheme than the
primitives on which it is based.