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From: Sam Partington (sam.partington_at_[hidden])
Date: 2003-11-25 10:36:12

Daniel Frey <mailto:daniel.frey_at_[hidden]> wrote:
> But instead of writing it down all here, this is probably
> what should go
> into the operators library's documentation. Or in a separate document.
> Peter? In this case the library would provide documentation, knowledge
> and background information, plus a comparison to
> alternatives. It cannot
> offer code to include, only help to implement Peter's
> technique in the
> right way with the right workarounds. In that sense, we could
> also say
> that the technique is already used in other parts of boost and IMHO a
> fast-track review is therefore justified. It's also a special
> situation as we are not discussing the inclusion of new code, but the
> removal of
> existing code from the CVS.

Documentation of Peters idiom in a very limited form, including why it is
not suitable in a generic case is available in the rationale part of the
bool_testable notes :

This could be extended or moved to a separate document.

David Abrahams <mailto:dave_at_[hidden]> wrote:
> It seems to me it should be possible to make bool_testable use
> Peter's idiom. Am I missing something?

That was the original suggestion :

but as people pointed out (Daniel I think) in the case of there being a user
defined conversion operator to integral type, the bool conversion is never

I've been playing with the idea of selecting from either implementation as
suitable :

template <class T, class B = ::boost::detail::empty_base>
struct bool_testable : B
        operator bool() const
                return !!static_cast<const T&>(*this);
        typedef signed char private_number_type;
        operator private_number_type() const;

template <class T, class B = ::boost::detail::empty_base>
struct safe_bool : B
        typedef bool (T::*safe_bool_type)() const;

        operator safe_bool_type() const
                return !static_cast<const T&>(*this) ? 0 : &T::operator!;


template<class T1, class T2, bool value>
        class select_bool_impl : public T1

template<class T1, class T2>
        class select_bool_impl<T1, T2, false> : public T2

template<class T, class B = ::boost::detail::empty_base>
        class the_bool_testable :
                public select_bool_impl<safe_bool<T, B>,
                                                bool_testable<T, B>,

The idea being that if the derived class has a user-defined conversion
operator to use the private number type, otherwise to use Peter's safe-bool
idiom. I thought this would do the trick, but when I tried the following :

struct Test1 : the_bool_testable<Test1>
        bool operator!() const;
BOOST_STATIC_ASSERT((boost::is_base_and_derived<safe_bool<Test1>, Test1
// (^^ this fails ^^ )

struct Test2 : the_bool_testable<Test2>
        bool operator!() const;
        operator int() const;

to check that the correct implementation was being instantiated, I realised
that is_convertible is always returning true in this situation. Presumably
because it is finding the bool conversion? Any help here appreciated, or if
you think I'm barking up the wrong tree completely, please let me know.

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