Subject: [boost] A vision of Boost
From: David Sankel (camior_at_[hidden])
Date: 2017-07-19 03:31:18
I got involved with Boost in 1999. I was 17, attempting to learn C++, and
saw a footnote in "The C++ Standard Library" that mentioned boost.org as a
place where quality C++ libraries are found. For me, it was love at first
sight. Automatic pointers? Amazing. 'std::array'? Fantastic. I've been
using C++ and Boost ever since.
Never in my wildest dreams would I have imagined that eighteen years later
I'd be sitting on the C++ standardization and Boost steering committees. As
I listen in the Library Evolution Working Group I imagine what it must've
been like for Beman and Dave to sit in similar meetings and ask themselves
"wouldn't it be great if there were an online place that collects freely
available C++ libraries and offers a peer-review process for incorporation?
It'd be hugely beneficial for C++ users and the C++ standard as well."
People get involved in Boost for many reasons. Some think it'll improve the
chances they get their library standardized (and it's true!). Some think
it'll improve their consulting or job prospects (true as well!). Others
hone in on particular aspects, such as the build system, the people, or
All these reasons are great, but for me the key was Boost's mission: to
improve the way people code. At first it was more about improving the way I
code, but as time went on it became more and more about helping others. For
me, this is something worthwhile; worth sacrificing for.
Now there are pros and cons with moving Boost to CMake, but at the center
of all steering committee discussions has been the Boost mission. "How is
this going to help us reach more users?" "How is this going to help us
reach more developers?" "How is this going to impact the standard and the
greater C++ community?"
We may have made the wrong choice (though I doubt it). We may have
communicated it in a non-ideal way. However, one thing is for sure: We made
the decision based on furthering Boost's mission. A mission I want others
to fall in love with like I have.
So, we're moving to CMake. And, yes, we'll get there together. Many
questions still exist and we'll have to figure out the answers as a
community. The stalemate, however, is now over.
-- David Sankel