Why is python not written in C++ ?

John Bokma john at castleamber.com
Wed Aug 4 00:20:49 CEST 2010

Ethan Furman <ethan at stoneleaf.us> writes:

> John Bokma wrote:
>> Michael Torrie <torriem at gmail.com> writes:
>>> On 08/01/2010 07:09 PM, John Bokma wrote:
>>>>> One thing that comes to mind is that it's much easier to
>>>>> distribute C libraries than C++ libraries.
>>>> In the beginning of C++ there were programs that just converted C++ to C
>>>> (frontends). At least that is how the C++ compiler Acorn sold worked.
>>>> So I don't think your argument was much true back then.
>>> No, he is still right.  Each C++ implementation did name mangling
>>> differently leading to "C" libraries that had incompatible names and
>>> signatures.  Also each frontend could have generated incompatible
>>> vtables and other C++ structures.  So C code generated by one C++
>>> frontend could not easily call C code generated by another C++ frontend.
>>>  So the same arguments that are made about C++ now were just as valid
>>> back then when C++ was merely a fancy preprocessor.
>> See my other post: I understand that two C++ preprocessors can't call
>> each others generated code, but if one uses C++ and knows that one can
>> only use shared C libraries on target systems, and not C++ libraries
>> that might be present (or more likely not: C++ was new in those days).
> So if Python were written in C++, and an extension was written in C++,
> how could the two call each other?

Via C.

John Bokma                                                               j3b

Hacking & Hiking in Mexico -  http://johnbokma.com/
http://castleamber.com/ - Perl & Python Development

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