Linked by Eugenia Loli on Sun 16th Dec 2007 00:04 UTC, submitted by obsethryl
Gentoo A relatively lengthy Q&A with Ciaran McCreesh about Paludis, the Portage alternative for Gentoo.
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RE: was a long time gentoo fan...
by skynexus on Sun 16th Dec 2007 10:42 UTC in reply to "was a long time gentoo fan..."
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I love the prospect of Paludis written in C++

I still remember how underwhelmed I was when hearing about this the first time. Before condemning the choice of language, I tried to find out why they chose C++ to begin with. This is what they say on their FAQ:

Because we don't have the time or the manpower to write it in C.

However, as python would have allowed them to write Paludis ridiculously faster than using C++, that line of reasoning seemed questionable. Especially as emerge was itself written in python. Poking around the website, I also came across this item on their list of features:

Low dependency bloat. No Python, no big external crypto libraries.

So I assumed the "bloat" aspect was another rationale. But given the advantages of Python, I find it hard to take that argument seriously. Apparently, McCreesh now also said the following about scripting languages in the article:

The tradeoffs, of course, being a much lower level of static checking, a much higher risk of buggy code slipping through and much higher testing requirements to meet release standards ...

Since when does C++ deliver reduced risk of buggy code slipping through when compared to, say, Python? This fantastic claim seems to contradict common sense. Choosing the right language for the job is important, and C++ has always seemed to me as a horrible choice. Everything they say to rationalize their choice simply acerbates this impression.

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