By value or by reference?

Alex Martelli aleaxit at
Tue Oct 19 21:15:21 CEST 2004

Josiah Carlson <jcarlson at> wrote:

> > > I agree with most everything you have said, though consider the pointer
> > > vs. value of C to define the semantics of the passing.  That is, if you
> > > get a pointer in C, it is by reference.  If you don't get a pointer, it
> > > is by value.
> > 
> > I disagree: you get the value of the pointer.  If you assign to the
> > barename of the pointer, this has no effect on the caller.
> [snip the remainder of the email]
> Sounds good.  Now with the semantic arguments out of the way, is there a
> link where the equivalent of what was just said is available in the
> documentation?
> If yes, great.  If not, perhaps what has been discussed should be
> slimmed down and inserted into the FAQ so that future generations don't
> need to rehash this conversation.

Sure, but it's a vain hope -- 2 out of 3 questions asked here ARE about
stuff well covered in the FAQ, anyway.


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