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The process of turning source code into a machine-executable binary file. For example, the GNU project's compiler collection, GCC, converts C, C++ and other languages from their human-readable (text) source into machine code. Actually, the GCC is quite a bit more complicated than that: it first complies the text into a special intermediate code of its own, then it optimises (streamlines) that code into a standard source-independent form, which it then passes on to a machine-specific optimiser and compiler which finally produce the binary executable.