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From: David Abrahams (david.abrahams_at_[hidden])
Date: 2002-02-23 14:01:53

----- Original Message -----
From: "David B. Held" <dheld_at_[hidden]>

> Well, I'm not sure you understood what Chris said. The project *isn't*
> about how to produce a library with the broadest possible user base. As
> I understand it, the purpose is to create "prior use" cases for suggested
> language modifications. To that end, a sufficient number of people will
> use Boost, easy or not, and help to establish how new idioms and concepts
> work in the real world. I would thus conclude that the success of this
> project will be measured by what good and useful language features make
> it into the next standard because of a demonstration of prior art. That
> be accomplished without catering to the needs of every user (and seems
> to have done so just fine until now). I think it's just a nice side
> that
> people like me get to use really powerful libraries boost::function,
> boost::bind,
> and boost::smart_ptr, and if I see the best features of these libraries in
> the next version of C++, I will feel that Boost has accomplished its
> as probably will the maintainers and authors.

Those are the up-front stated goals, but of course since we're an amorphous
volunteer group, people have all sorts of motivations. I know a lot of us
find size-of-user-base to be quite compelling.

> > You say that like I was reluctant. That is a misrepresentation. When
> > this thread started, it was not clear that an autotools build would be
> > accepted into Boost even if it was offered. In fact, I think one could
> > reasonably conclude that it would be rejected based on threads prior to
> > this one. Fortunately, it now looks like an autotools build would be
> > accepted. That's all I've ever wanted.
> From what I observe, the "Boost process" is to *ask* whether a library
> or tools submission would be useful or welcome first, instead of telling
> people that they want and need it, and if they don't, they are
> pig-headed greedy proprietary jerks with their heads in the sand.

Some pro-autoconf posts have painted an extreme and inaccurate picture of
others' positions; why resort to the same tactics? While I tend to agree
with the general outlook you present, nobody said any of the things you
imply were said above (except maybe "proprietary"). Let's stick to the
facts, please. Otherwise, we'll end up with enough static that good work is


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