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From: David B. Held (dheld_at_[hidden])
Date: 2004-06-04 11:01:38

"Mattias Flodin" <flodin_at_[hidden]> wrote in message
> [...]
> However, in addition to the interface, the Boost community provides
> a reference implementation. The question is, would we want this
> reference implementation to require external compilers for other
> languages?

This is a good question.

> [...]
> I think being able to implement 99% of the language specification
> within the language itself is important. If such a goal isn't met, we
> would essentially limit C++ to platforms that also provide the other
> languages needed.

Not quite. You need only provide the libraries, which could possibly
be cross-compiled. And you will be hard-pressed to find a platform
used for scientific computing that wouldn't already have the external
lanugages in question.

> I don't think it would be a defeat to show comparison graphs
> where FORTRAN turns out to run faster than C++. There are many
> times when other things are important than that extra bit of speed.
> Speed of implementing the algorithm, for instance. If I see graphs
> where FORTRAN is, say, 10% faster, I might just decide it's worth
> losing 10% speed in order to gain something else.

You might. But if you're buying 100 hours of time on a supercomputer
at $100/hr. (not sure what going rates are), 10% could mean the
difference between $10,000 and $9,000. If we're talking $1,000/hr.
or many more hours (like a month), then the absolute savings is
obviously much greater. If we aren't targeting the high-end
computing market, then perhaps this is all irrelevant. But if you want
the best mathematicians in the world to take these libraries seriously,
then perhaps we do want to target the high-performance computing


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