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in reply to read()

What you say is all true when dealing with text files, but when it comes to dealing with non text files (like an mp3, or jpeg), read() is probably going to be your only solution since you really can't read those types of files line by line, and who knows what you'll get in an array. The usefulness of read is best understood when you understand it's compliment function seek() (well to me anyway). With these two functions you can jump around a file and read various amounts of data, without worrying about hitting an unexpected \n.