Linked by Thom Holwerda on Sat 26th Nov 2005 17:02 UTC, submitted by Megatux
Gnome "I followed the debate about a successor for the C/C++ combination as the primary language for developing the GNOME core desktop platform very closely last month. There has been discussion about a number of options. What I would like to do on this page is give an overview how a probably less well-known language might be a viable compromise as a C/C++ successor. This language is called Eiffel and exists for over a decade. Eiffel takes the principle of Object-Oriented programming to its extremes and, as a consequence, is a very easy to learn language."
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Because C is not needed for the things the Gnome project is facilitating (Gnome probably should stick to c for most things, but the people building on Gnome don't need to, usually).

As much as I love c, it's a pain in the butt to write big things in. It's not that you can do it with half the effort in another language, it's that the 10-20% of time you may save is the most obnoxious and demoralizing 10-20% of the time you spend debugging. Digging around for that error which crashes your program 3 minutes after it happens is not fun, even with amazing tools like valgrind you still have trouble finding it. And until you do, that amazing you code you wrote is worthless.

I really don't see Eiffel as the best language choice. A lot of people have suggested D, but given that it compiles to native code and supports the C ABI there's no point in supporting D (it's already supported). Languages like C#, Java, or Python would gain by being the typical language used. Users don't want to have the CLR running with Java and Python just to use their three favorite programs... And since all three of those have massive libraries of their own, ..., well there goes another chunk of RAM (Eiffel may benefit here, I'm not sure).

If they simply say "use what you wish" people will use a hodge-podge of other languages and people will eventually have three VM/Interpretor's running... Who knows, maybe even more.

I don't see Eiffel as being either:
1.) The best high level language for Gnome.
2.) Gaining that much from official support.

Reply Parent Score: 1

Tuishimi Member since:

Just don't write buggy code.


Yeah, C can be a pain, as can any of the older languages. But I would have thought that by now the libraries would be so mature that it would be more like gluing together a few library calls and viola! You have a gnome program.

Mind you, I have never ever even LOOKED at this stuff fro a developer's standpoint... I am too busy in my own little world of coding... ;)

Reply Parent Score: 1

ma_d Member since:

If your program were a text editor that couldn't save or open files, sure....

Reply Parent Score: 1