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To an extent, this is the hard part about any programming language. As soon as you're writing programs that don't completely fit into the given system and language libraries, you will have to start writing those layers.

C just starts requiring these layers at a slightly earlier point in the abstraction continuum. On the other hand, the low-level abstractions are the easy ones: my experiences verify that in a medium-size project and up, with C you will have quickly built your own vocabulary and primitives and you get to the meat only a bit later than with some higher-level language.

I don't mean that C is all you need but that it's not the big problem in practice. I've seen so many large C projects where most of the code is about the problem domain itself and only a minor part is dedicated to overcome the C's lack of features and primitives.

I somehow recognize it as a good thing in C, forcing the programmer to build these layers early. You'll have to do that eventually and if you're so used to doing it already, you'll have more brain left for the actual problem itself.

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