why does the following code generate a "reference to 'tm' is ambiguous" error?

#include <iostream>
using namespace std;

namespace characters {
    char tm='a';
    char tc='a';

using namespace characters;

class table {
        void printline (){
            char m;

int main()
    table myTable;

return 0;

but when you comment out the m=tm; line and reinstate the line m=tc the code works fine.

what is so special about the identifier tm?

>Solution :

using namespace characters; is the issue, that brings characters::tm to the global namespace and makes the ambiguity with the global struct tm. The solution:

// using namespace characters;
using characters::tm;

That directs the compiler, if you meet tm, use here tm from the namespace characters.

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