[C++-sig] Re: Allocating objects on the heap by default.

Prabhu Ramachandran prabhu at aero.iitm.ernet.in
Mon Jul 7 22:19:19 CEST 2003

>>>>> "DA" == David Abrahams <dave at boost-consulting.com> writes:

    >> Hmm, so you are saying none of the functions should have ever
    >> been written to deal with raw pointers at all and should all
    >> have used shared_ptr?

    DA> Raw pointers are low-level.  High-level interfaces are easier
    DA> to use correctly and much easier to wrap.


    >> But at some point using shared_ptr requires one to handle
    >> reference cycles and figure how to break them

    DA> So does manual new/delete.

Yes, but I've done that already and don't have the time to change all
my code to use smart pointers now.  Essentially, its not a trivial
change for me to make (since my library is quite large and uses
pointers quite a bit) so I'll postpone this and update my to-do list.

    >> (using weak_ptrs).  I'll admit that this is probably rare
    >> (although I can think of a few candidates in my code) and a lot
    >> easier to deal with.  It also requires that the users generate
    >> shared_ptrs when they create a new object.

    DA> I'm not sure what you mean by that.

Its nothing important but what I meant was that a user of the library
has to use 'shared_ptr<A> p(new A());' and not new A().  No big deal
at all but its a change nonetheless.

    >> The only issue that I need clarification is on how Pyste should
    >> do handle this.  When use_auto_ptr(Obj) is specified should it
    >> register both the to_python converter and also pass the
    >> HeldType as auto_ptr or should the HeldType parameter be
    >> handled by something like handle_with_auto_ptr(Obj)?  I think
    >> the latter is better but am not quite sure.  I can submit a
    >> patch to handle this if this its OK.

    DA> I'm not fond of the idea of hard-coding auto_ptr and
    DA> shared_ptr into Pyste; there are other important smart
    DA> pointers.  It would be better to write:

    DA>         A.held_by('std::auto_ptr<A>')

Yes, I was thinking the same thing but didn't mention it in my earlier
list of items!  I knew I forgot something.

    DA> If Pyste wants to supply auto_ptr and shared_ptr objects so
    DA> that

    DA>         A.held_by(auto_ptr)
    DA> or
    DA>         A.held_by(shared_ptr)

Hmm, I am not sure if the A.held_by approach is easy to do but I do
know that this can be done easily:

  holder(A, 'std::auto_ptr<test::A>')

Would that do?


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