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Subject: Re: [Boost-users] Boost and C++ "physical design"
From: Vladimir Prus (vladimir_at_[hidden])
Date: 2009-03-22 03:35:23

Christopher Currie wrote:

> 2009/3/20 Václav Haisman <v.haisman_at_[hidden]>:
>> Yang Zhang wrote, On 20.3.2009 10:20:
>>> Is there any advice on taming (1) the generated code size and/or (2) the
>> What do you want to tame here? Sizes of executables are IME not a problem,
>> unless you are on severally constrained embedded platform. Few megabytes of
>> executable are usually insignificant compared to huge data sets that acompany
>> it.
> This is a naïve view at best. Commercial software, especially
> downloadable software, can be very sensitive to application size both
> due to the perception of bloat as well as the desire to improve
> adoption by reducing the barrier of entry. This counts both for adding
> new pre-compiled DLLs as well as the additional code size from
> template instantiation.

I completely agree. Program size might not be a practical factor when a program
is already installed on a desktop computer with 500G hard drive. But somebody
sitting in a cafe and downloading the same program over free wifi onto his netbook
will surely appreciate reasonable size.

> I think that most Boost library maintainers are sensitive to the issue
> of code size, and that the libraries that implement non-member
> non-template function do so in a compiled library *because* they wish
> to control code bloat. If there examples you see in the code where
> this is not the case, there may be someone on the list who could give
> an engineering rationale for why that is.

I'd like to be wrong, but I think I saw the issue of code size dismissed,
and I am not aware of any systematic approach to measure code size impact
of individual libraries. Few years ago I've did some measurement for program_options
-- it terms of 'bytes of code to declare one option'. This proved
fairly entertaining, but clearly, measuring code size impact of one operation
may easily miss other sources of code bloat.

- Volodya

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