The C++ Standard

  This information may be updated soon.

There is a standard for the C++ programming language, and you can read the ISO committee's press release about it here. You cannot get a copy of the standard on-line because the ISO does not allow public acces to a machine readable version. However, if you can manage with a slightly out-of-date version, you can look at the public discussion document. Copies of this, in various formats, can be downloaded for local viewing.

You can get a paper copy of the standard from ANSI by sending an email to Lynn Barra asking for the latest version of Draft Proposed American National Standard for Information Systems Programming Language C++, which is document number CD14882. I have no idea how much this will cost.

Before the ANSI and ISO committees produced their standard, the defacto standard for C++ was the Annotated C++ Reference Manual by Margaret Ellis and Bjarne Stroustrup. This added templates and exceptions to the language. The ANSI draft standard developed these, and added name spaces, run-time type identification, a new set of standard libraries, and many other features to the language. The latest version of Stroustrup's book, The C++ Programming Language 3rd Edition, gives a good description of the standard language.