Compact Disc Writing in C programming

I've figured out how to read from a CD by using ioctl but it doesn't look like ioctl supports writing to a cd.

How do programmers do it? ioctl is a mystery to me, could someone explain the big picture of it?
Why can't we treat the path to the cd device like any file by opening it and reading?
^I tried this and the cd drive wasn't activated and read returned only zeros in the buffer.

I would highly prefer low level calls. Thanks for any help!
I'm also curious on the format of how the bits are stored on the CD. How is error checking done? parity bits?



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