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Subject: Re: [boost] [outcome] Possible extensions/changes to std::experimental::expected
From: Niall Douglas (s_sourceforge_at_[hidden])
Date: 2017-05-26 15:57:14

>> I understand people like implicit constructors until they find that they
>> don't want them here or there.
>> void f(optional<T>);
>> T x;
>> f(x);
>> Later on add
>> void f(expected<T>);
>> T x;
>> f(x); // ambiguous :(

This is fine. It's a compile time error. Writing f(expected<T>(x))
eliminates the ambiguity.

>> So T is a subset of two sets and then we need to be explicit. Been
>> explicit from the beginning avoids surprises.
> This is just a compile-time surprise, so this is not all that bad. But you
> may get a run-time surprise
> vector<T> x;
> void f(expected<vector<T>>);
> f(x); // are you aware that you are copying a vecotor?

If people fail to use std::move, they should always assume a copy.
Except when returning from a function.

f(std::move(x)) would do the right thing here I believe.

> Maybe no-one uses expected<T> as function parameter, but consider this:
> expected<vector<T>> g()
> {
> vector<T> v;
> // try to populate v;
> return v; // are you expecting a copy elision here?
> }

This is definitely a concern for C++ 14 (not 17). But I think end users
get this problem with implicit conversion - it helps that recent clangs
have a rich set of warnings when you do an inefficient return of a stack
allocated object. So I don't think it as much a problem as others think.

>> Even if we wanted that expected<T,E> is valid only if T is different from
>> E, I believe the explicitness has added value.

Throughout AFIO v2, I not only **always** return via make_valued_result
or make_errored_result, I found myself specifying the return type too
e.g. make_valued_result<io_state>(s);

But imposing that on users so they have no choice ... that I don't agree
with for a Boost library. I am much less concerned with a STL type
admittedly, there I'd live with always explicit construction.


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