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From Brian Behlendorf <>
Subject the C++ disaster (was Re: Source code - optimised assembler)
Date Wed, 11 Mar 1998 08:46:54 GMT

feul for the fire.

>Resent-Date: Wed, 11 Mar 1998 00:42:37 -0800 (PST)
>Path: not-for-mail
>From: Jamie Zawinski <>
>Newsgroups: netscape.public.mozilla.general
>Subject: the C++ disaster (was Re: Source code - optimised assembler)
>Date: Wed, 11 Mar 1998 00:42:02 -0800
>Organization: The Mystic Knights of Mozilla,
>Lines: 28
>X-Mailer: Mozilla 3.02 (X11; U; IRIX 6.3 IP32)
>X-Mailing-List: <> archive/latest/1547
>G. Sumner Hayes wrote:
>> Netscape chose C for some parts of the code and C++ for others, and
>> while those may or may not be the best possible choices they're
>> certainly reasonable ones.  They've dealt with the portability
>> problems pretty well so far, and I presume they have a reasonable
>> knowledge of available alternatives and the pros/cons of those.
>We have dealt with the portability problems, but at colossal cost.
>In my humble but correct opinion, it was a huge mistake to allow C++
>code into the cross-platform areas of Mozilla.  Those who advocated
>this underestimated the difficulty of the portability problems by
>at least an order of magnitude.  But, what's done is done; that's
>where we are today, and being able to say "I told you so" isn't much
>of a reward.
>Hopefully, if we get anything out of this pyrrhic victory, at the
>least we should be able to come up with a document that shows where
>the land mines are buried, and that will perhaps convince others not
>to run headlong into this same disaster in the future.
>It's too bad that most people don't get the fact that an object-oriented
>programming style has exactly nothing to do with the programming
>language you use.  
>Jamie Zawinski      about:jwz
"Optimism is a strategy for making               
a better future." - Noam Chomsky              

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