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Subject: Re: [boost] [msm] Review
From: Jeffrey Bosboom (jbosboom_at_[hidden])
Date: 2009-12-03 23:39:02

David Bergman wrote:
> How do you think it feels for new Boost users to encounter two libraries with virtually identical use and interface? I think that is a bad thing in itself, and makes Boost look less coherent.

Your point seems to be that there should only be one library for a given
task because users will be confused when you ask them to choose one
based on their merits. While I think it's a valid point, I don't think
it's a good enough reason to reject a library or to remove an existing
library. After all, the C++ language itself gives the programmer a lot
of choices for accomplishing basically the same task.

But I think this concern can be addressed if there is a documentation
page that compares the libraries that is included in (or linked from)
both libraries' documentation. This would make it much easier for a
user to choose one or the other without having to read the full
documentation for each.

> I.e., if these two libraries were up for review now, would we accept
> them both?

Probably not, but we can't drop support for an existing library, at
least without a deprecation period (and preferably an interface adaptor
that will allow code written against the old library to run using the
new one). The other option would be to reject MSM because Statechart
has already been accepted, and I think that would be a bad idea as well.

Decide whether MSM should be included or not on its own merits. If so,
then MSM makes Boost better; we shouldn't be so concerned with being
perfect that we lose the opportunity to be better.

--Jeffrey Bosboom

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