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Subject: Re: [boost] Coverity Static Code Analysis
From: Gennaro Prota (gennaro.prota_at_[hidden])
Date: 2009-02-04 04:38:29

Michael Fawcett wrote:
> On Tue, Feb 3, 2009 at 5:15 PM, Gennaro Prota
> <gennaro.prota_at_[hidden]> wrote:
>> Because there's already enough nonsense to show off on the
>> site's corners? :-)
> Do you mean Coverity's or Boost's site?

Boost ("most expertly designed in the world", etc.)

> I'm not familiar with Coverity at all.

First time I hear of it, too :-) From a quick (as in
"uninterested") glance at their site, they seem yet another
"provider of nothing" trying to make a name for itself (and go
from there to make money).

It may well be that adding a "Coverity certified" or anything
like that to the Boost home page will convince more people to
"buy"; it's likely in fact (I hate to say it, but a lot of the
people who gravitate around OSS are amateurs, and are easily
excited). Personally, I still dream of a world were software
quality is quality, not labels or marks. FWIW, nobody in Boost
does anything about unnamed namespaces in include files, for
instance. In fact, nobody looks at the inspection report (it
would have been the quickest way to notice the new CMake files
:-)). Most (all?) of Boost relies on Boost Testing, which is one
of the most complex sub-libraries, and one where I've seen some
of the worst engineering practices applied. The "new"
lexical_cast is a close friend, and there are simply authors who
don't know where the house of simplicity is (looking at the
source code of one of the tools I found boost::tuple used
--which in turn meant type_traits, which in turn meant mpl,
lambda and God knows what-- when std::pair would just do). I
could continue for hours, really (but please don't ask). At the
end of the day, nobody is going to complain to anyone, because
everything is "volunteer contribution". That may be humanly
understandable, but don't expect to have quality in this kind of
ecosystem ("patches are welcome", "if you notice anything wrong
you can fix it" are easy escapes: you don't produce solid
software by trial and error, nor you can really fight the
mentality of an overwhelming majority).

If you like, you can put it this way: Boost is no better than
Wikipedia. I find Wikipedia useful, but I also find errors (or
completely insane entries) every time I read it.


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