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Subject: Re: [boost] Boost Evolution
From: Vladimir Prus (vladimir.prus_at_[hidden])
Date: 2016-05-17 14:00:20


On 17/05/2016 20:27, David Sankel wrote:
> On Tue, May 17, 2016 at 10:37 AM, Robert Ramey <ramey_at_[hidden]> wrote:
>> Take a look at the CMake history. There was a huge effort undertaken from
>> the top to switch to CMake for build / test. It was a failure because it
>> tried to do it from the top down. I'm thinking that the promoters of this
>> idea concluded that the problem wasn't ambitious enough and added
>> deployment to the task and built rypll. This had as key collaborators our
>> most capable and hard core developers - including David Abrahams and Eric
>> Neibler. Huge amount of expended effort but not much came out of it.
> This is a false account of what happened. CMake was dropped because the
> modularization to git was considered a worthwhile thing to do first. After
> the so-called top-down transition to git (which was good for C++, but bad
> for insiders), the steering committee somehow came to the conclusion that
> their job wasn't to steer. After last week's future of boost session (or
> lack-of rather), my understanding is that this is being revisited.

Could you clarify why you think your account is true, and Robert's is false?
I don't know what's happening at C++ Now, but I don't think you regularly
participate in this mailing list, whereas Robert does, so I'm surprised by the
forceful statements that you make.

> Boost cannot evolve the way it has in the past. When it was getting
> started, we didn't have over-representation of groups who benefit from the
> status-quo. We didn't have the idea of servicing the "Boost community"
> instead of the "C++ community". Either the steering committee will step up
> to protect the original vision of Boost, or the vision of Boost will change
> to serve the insiders. This means life or death for boost and, frankly,
> it's been dying over the past few years.

Just as reminder, the original vision of Boost can be found at,
and it cannot be protected in its entirety for long - the C++ standard is not
infinite, and the role of Boost as "existing practice" for standardization
becomes less relevant as the standard becomes longer, while its role as
collection of peer-reviewed production libraries will probably be more

I don't know who are insiders that are getting served, and what
benefits who gets, and what "C++ community" you have in mind, but anybody
I discuss Boost with are mostly concerned about overuse of templates and
meta-programming, along with the lack of any API or ABI stability. Serving
those C++ users requires stability and solid engineering above all, and this
is what is presently missing.

Vladimir Prus

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