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Subject: Re: [boost] Boost is supposed to serve *the entire C++ community; it isn't Boost's goal to serve Boost's community*
From: Norbert Wenzel (norbert.wenzel.lists_at_[hidden])
Date: 2016-05-22 08:57:04

On 05/22/2016 09:53 AM, Rainer Deyke wrote:
> On 19.05.2016 11:17, Niall Douglas wrote:
>> The C++ 14 only libraries contributed to date are clearly written
>> first for C++ not Boost. They are the future we should be proactively
>> encouraging into a new clean ground up redesigned fork of Boost, a
>> Boost 2.0, instead of corralling them into legacy and outdated
>> packaging, build, design, documentation and idioms out of some
>> misguided desire for serving the legacy Boost usership before that of
>> the wider C++ community.
> What percentage of "the entire C++ community" do you think has access to
> a C++ 14 compiler anyway?
> [...] I'd love to switch to C++ 14, but right now it's just
> technically viable for me.

I have to agree with that. The company I work for builds devices that
run C++ code and Desktop applications to control these devices. While
I'm relatively free to use whatever compiler I want on the desktop side
(as long as I provide an installable package to the customer, that runs
on Windows Vista+) I cannot control what is available on the device. So
I have to adapt to whatever compiler version the firmware team decided
to provide. The most recent compiler they provide on one of our devices
is GCC 4.8. I will have to support this compiler (even when writing new
code that will be running on both, desktop machines and on the devices)
for years to come.

As a side note, we have to support code written in Visual C++ 6.0, but
these versions do not require any new Boost version, so this is not an
issue. But of course we have VMs with such ancient compilers around and
in use.

But any new library that requires C++14 is of no use to our company, as
long as we cannot make sure the code will be running in our desktop
applications only (which is the majority of newly written software in
our company). And this will not change quickly. A new version of Boost
that required C++14 for all their libraries would not be used, even
though it might be faster, better tested and have a ton of other
advantages. It would be easier to write/port some new code ourselves
than to force a change of infrastructure to the entire company.

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